To explore different institutional barriers to and facilitators of physical activity (PA) in nursing homes.
Cross-sectional survey of 40 German nursing homes and 217 nursing-home residents (NHRs; M ± SD age 80 ± 10.2 yr, 55% women, MMSE ≥20). Quantitative data were collected on the structural characteristics of nursing homes and the PA services available.
Forms of exercise available were not adequately communicated to residents. Overall participation was below 50%. Awareness was significantly higher in residents with informed relatives (p = .003). A broad range of forms of exercise was generally available (M ± SD 5 ± 2.22, range 0–10), but they were rarely tailored to NHRs’ needs and their effectiveness remains questionable.
Multidimensional opportunities to promote PA in NHRs are identified.