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NiCole R. Keith, Daniel O. Clark, Timothy E. Stump, Douglas K. Miller and Christopher M. Callahan

Background:

An accurate physical fitness survey could be useful in research and clinical care.

Purpose:

To estimate the validity and reliability of a Self-Reported Fitness (SRFit) survey; an instrument that estimates muscular fitness, flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, BMI, and body composition (BC) in adults ≥ 40 years of age.

Methods:

201 participants completed the SF-36 Physical Function Subscale, International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ), Older Adults’ Desire for Physical Competence Scale (Rejeski), the SRFit survey, and the Rikli and Jones Senior Fitness Test. BC, height and weight were measured. SRFit survey items described BC, BMI, and Senior Fitness Test movements. Correlations between the Senior Fitness Test and the SRFit survey assessed concurrent validity. Cronbach’s Alpha measured internal consistency within each SRFit domain. SRFit domain scores were compared with SF-36, IPAQ, and Rejeski survey scores to assess construct validity. Intraclass correlations evaluated test-retest reliability.

Results:

Correlations between SRFit and the Senior Fitness Test domains ranged from 0.35 to 0.79. Cronbach’s Alpha scores were .75 to .85. Correlations between SRFit and other survey scores were –0.23 to 0.72 and in the expected direction. Intraclass correlation coefficients were 0.79 to 0.93. All P-values were 0.001.

Conclusion:

Initial evaluation supports the SRFit survey’s validity and reliability.

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Wanzhu Tu, Timothy E. Stump, Teresa M. Damush and Daniel O. Clark

This research investigated the effects of health and environmental factors on the dropout and intermittent nonattendance of an exercise program designed specifically for older, female, primary-care patients living in the inner city. Class-attendance records (n = 21,538) from a cohort 110 women were analyzed. Women who dropped out early had poorer perceived health and were more likely to report pain as an exercise barrier at baseline. Those who lived in a census tract where a larger percentage of workers walk to work were less likely to drop out early. Intermittent nonattendance was associated with adverse weather conditions including heat index above 90 ºF, wind-chill index below 20 ºF, overcast sky, and snow. Better attendance was associated with greater atmospheric pressure, as well as lower number of sunlight hours per day. This research highlights the need to better understand environmental barriers when promoting physical activities in older women.