Gender differences in physical activity motivators and context preferences: A population-based study in people in their sixties

van Uffelen, Jannique, Khan, Asaduzzamsan and Burton, Nicola W (2017) Gender differences in physical activity motivators and context preferences: A population-based study in people in their sixties. BMC Public Health, 17 (1). pp. 624-635. ISSN 1471-2458

Abstract

© 2017 The Author(s). Background: Although regular participation in physical activity (PA) has health benefits across the life span, the proportion of people doing sufficient activity for these benefits decreases with age. The aim of this study was to identify motivating factors and context preferences for PA in people in their sixties, and to examine gender differences in these factors. Methods: Data were used from people aged 60-67 years who responded to a mail survey in Brisbane, Australia, in 2009. Respondents indicated their agreement/disagreement with seven PA motivators and 14 PA context preferences. Data were analyzed using multi-level multinomial logistic regression, adjusted for sociodemographic and health variables, and PA level. Results: Of the 1845 respondents, 59% was female. Based on self-reported PA, one in three respondents (35%) did not meet the PA guidelines of at least 150 min of moderate intensity PA per week. The three leading motivating factors for both women and men were to prevent health problems, to feel good and to lose weight. Women were more likely than men to be motivated by improving appearance (OR 2.93, 95%CI 2.07-4.15), spending time with others (1.76, 1.31-2.37), meeting friends (1.76, 1.31-2.36) or losing weight (1.74, 1.12-2.71). The three leading context preferences for both women and men were for activities close to home, at low cost and that could be done alone. Women were more likely than men to prefer activities that are with people of the same sex (OR 4.67, 95%CI 3.14-6.94), supervised (2.79, 1.94-4.02), with people the same age (2.00, 1.43-2.78) and at a fixed time (1.42, 1.06-1.91). Women were less likely than men to prefer activities that are competitive (OR 0.32, 95%CI 0.22-0.46), are vigorous (0.33, 0.24-0.47), require skill and practice (0.40, 0.29-0.55) and done outdoors (0.51, 0.30-0.86). Conclusion: Although there was overlap in motivating factors and context preferences for PA in women and men aged 60-67 years, there were also marked gender differences. These results suggest that PA options for people in their sixties should be tailored to meet gender specific interests in order to promote PA participation in this rapidly growing population group.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/41702
DOI https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-017-4540-0
Official URL https://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles...
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL)
Keywords Physical activity, exercise, health, ageing, population-based study
Citations in Scopus 81 - View on Scopus
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