Elderly Individuals with Structured Physical Time Show No Significant Reduction in Sedentary Lifestyle

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore have reported that seniors who engage in structured physical activity verses those who do not have structured activity did not show a significant reduction in long-term sedentary bouts. The information used came from the 2014 LIFE study.

While the information analyzed did show that structured physical activity helps with mobility, it does not have as large an impact on sedentary bouts as many expected it would. Overall, those with structured activity saw a small decrease in their overall sedentary time, but periods of sedentary behavior of 60 minutes or longer were not affected.

Participants in the study wore an accelerometer that reported physical activity. The device was worn for an average of 870 minutes each day. The results show that on average 647 minutes/day were sedentary during the basic information gathering stage. Following that, structured physical activity was included in the test group. Six months later, this group had an average of 630 sedentary minutes/day. The control group showed a mean of 639 sedentary minutes/day.

The team also looked at the effect of structured activity on sedentary bouts of 10 to 30 minutes, 30 to 60 minutes, and 60 minutes and greater. The two shorter periods did show a decrease in time, but seniors who were sedentary for 60 minutes or more did not show any change in that behavior.

These findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on July 18, 2017.

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