UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Status Quo or Drop-Off : Do Older Adults Maintain Benefits From Choose to Move—A Scaled-Up Physical Activity Program—12 Months After Withdrawing the Intervention? McKay, Heather Anne, 1954-; Nettlefold, Lindsay; Sims-Gould, Joanie; Macdonald, Heather M.; Khan, Karim; Bauman, Adrian


Background: Choose to Move (CTM) is one of few scaled-up health-promoting interventions for older adults. We evaluated whether CTM participants maintained their intervention-related gains in physical activity (PA), mobility and social connectedness 12 months after the intervention ended. Methods: We assessed PA, mobility, loneliness, social isolation and muscle strength via questionnaire and objective measures in 235 older adults at baseline, 6-months (end of intervention) and 18-months (12-months post-intervention). We fitted linear mixed models to examine change in each outcome from 6 to 18 months (primary objective) and 0 to 18 months (secondary objective) and report by age group (60-74; 75+ yrs). Results: In younger participants, PA decreased between 6- and 18-months but remained significantly higher than at baseline. Intervention-related benefits in loneliness, social isolation, mobility and muscle strength were maintained between 6 and 18 months in younger participants. Older participants maintained their intervention benefits in loneliness, mobility and muscle strength. When compared with baseline, PA levels in older participants were unchanged whereas social isolation increased. Conclusions: Older adults maintained some, but not all, health benefits of CTM 12 months after the intervention ended. Long-term commitments are needed to deliver effective health-promoting interventions for older adults--if benefits are to be maintained.

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