We investigated the differences and over time changes in recommended physical activity among foreign-born (FB) from English speaking countries (ESC) and non-English speaking countries (NESC) relative to native-born (NB) Australians, and whether the association between nativity and duration of residence (DoR) and physical activity is mediated by English language proficiency, socioeconomic status and social engagement/membership.
This study applies multilevel group-meancentered mixed (hybrid) logistic regression models to 12 waves of longitudinal data (12,634 individuals) from the Household, Income and Labor Dynamics in Australia survey with engagement in physical activities for more than 3 times a week as the outcome variable.
Immigrants from ESC had higher odds of physical activity, while immigrants from NESC had significantly lower odds of physical activity than NB Australians, after adjusting for covariates. There was no evidence that these differences changed by DoR among immigrants from NESC, whereas ESC immigrants had higher odds of physical activity when their DoR was more than 20 years. We also found a mediating role of English language proficiency on immigrants physical activities.
Appropriate health promotion interventions should be implemented to foster physical activities among NESC immigrants, considering English language proficiency as an important factor in designing interventions.