Physical Activity and Aging

A special issue of Behavioral Sciences (ISSN 2076-328X). This special issue belongs to the section "Health Psychology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2024) | Viewed by 14347

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Graduate Program of Health Sciences and Physical Education and Sport Department, State University of Montes Claros, Montes Claros 39401-089, MG, Brazil
Interests: physical activity and cognitive impairment; aging and active lifestyle; neurobiology of exercise; physical activity and frailty; mental health and exercise

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Guest Editor
Department of Psychiatry of the Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA
Interests: psychiatry; neuroimaging; substance-related disorders; mental health and exercise

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Guest Editor
Sports and Physical Education Department of the State University of Montes Claros, Montes Claros, Minas Gerais 39401-089, MG, Brazil
Interests: physical activity and sleep and circadian rhythms; physical activity and cognitive impairment; aging and active lifestyle; neurobiology of exercise; mental health and exercise

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The population is aging rapidly worldwide, and this phenomenon is closely associated with non-communicable chronic diseases. An active lifestyle seems to delay the deleterious effects of aging on biological processes. The literature has shown that physical activity, in many ways, has the potential to prevent, control and treat chronic diseases. Considering that humans were evolutionarily programmed to move, there is a close relationship between movement and health. However, although the relevance of physical activity is recognized, there are many gaps to be elucidated regarding its different types, administration, and biological mechanisms. This Special Issue aims at the improvement of the current knowledge regarding physical activity and aging, building an interdisciplinary perspective about the physical and mental health of older adults. 

Dr. Renato Sobral Monteiro-Junior
Dr. Henrique Nunes Pereira Oliva
Dr. Frederico Sander Mansur Machado
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • physical activity
  • aging
  • mental health
  • frailty
  • lifestyle

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 1895 KiB  
Article
Exploring Factors Associated with Physical Activity in the Elderly: A Cross-Sectional Study during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Vesna Miljanovic Damjanovic, Lejla Obradovic Salcin, Daria Ostojic, Ljerka Ostojic, Barbara Gilic, Marijana Geets Kesic, Edin Uzicanin and Damir Sekulic
Behav. Sci. 2024, 14(1), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs14010062 - 17 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 946
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic negatively influenced individuals’ physical activity levels (PALs) and particularly the PAL of the elderly. However, few studies have examined the correlates of PALs in this population during the pandemic. This study aimed to evaluate the residence-specific correlates of PALs in [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic negatively influenced individuals’ physical activity levels (PALs) and particularly the PAL of the elderly. However, few studies have examined the correlates of PALs in this population during the pandemic. This study aimed to evaluate the residence-specific correlates of PALs in elderly people from Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina during the COVID-19 pandemic. The participants were 211 persons older than 65 years (101 females), of whom 111 were community-dwelling residents, and 110 were nursing home residents (71.11 ± 3.11 and 72.22 ± 4.01 years of age, respectively; t-test = 0.91, p < 0.05). The variables included health status, residential status sociodemographic factors, anthropometrics (body mass, height, and body mass index), and PAL. PAL was evaluated using a translated version of the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE), and was validated in this study. PASE showed good test–retest reliability (51% of the common variance) and validity (57% of the common variance, with the step count measured using pedometers). Apart from participants’ health status and age, PAL was positively correlated with (i) community-dwelling residence (OR = 1.93, 95% CI: 1.60–2.23), and (ii) a lower BMI (OR = 0.85, 95% CI = 0.71–0.98). The pre-pandemic physical activity was positively correlated with the PAL of the nursing home residents (OR = 1.2, 95% CI: 1.02–1.45). A higher education level was positively correlated with the PAL of community-dwelling residents (OR = 1.31, 95% CI: 1.04–1.66). This study evidenced the residence-specific correlates of PALs, and enabled the identification of specific groups that are at risk of having low PALs during the pandemic. Future studies examining this problem during a non-pandemic period are warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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12 pages, 1632 KiB  
Article
Wireless Lighting System: A New Tool for Assessing Cognitive Functions in the Elderly
by Néva Béraud-Peigné, Alexandra Perrot and Pauline Maillot
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(11), 943; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13110943 - 17 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 878
Abstract
Studies on the effects of aging on cognition have been using the same cognitive tests for decades. A Wireless Lighting System (WLS) could be used to assess cognitive functions in a physically active situation, making the assessment of cognition less isolated and more [...] Read more.
Studies on the effects of aging on cognition have been using the same cognitive tests for decades. A Wireless Lighting System (WLS) could be used to assess cognitive functions in a physically active situation, making the assessment of cognition less isolated and more ecological. This pilot study aimed to evaluate the potential of a WLS for assessing older adults’ cognitive functions. It was set up with 15 young (M = 23.47 years old) and 18 older adults (M = 71.44 years old). Their performances were recorded on three WLS tests, designed with the Witty SEM system to assess four main cognitive functions (i.e., inhibition, flexibility, visuospatial short-term and working memory), as well as on three traditional (TRAD) tests (Spatial Span Test, Stroop Test, Trail Making Test). The results show a significant difference between the YOUNG and OLD groups on all WLS test measures (except for WLS flexibility), as well as on all TRAD measures. Additionally, for the OLD group, there were significant correlations between WLS and TRAD test results (r = −0.49 for two measures of inhibition to r = −0.80 for two other measures of inhibition), except for visuospatial short-term memory. However, there was no significant correlation for the YOUNG group (ρ = −0.27 for inhibition to r = 0.45 for visuospatial short-term memory). These WLS tests were valid for assessing the cognitive functions (i.e., flexibility, visuospatial short-term and working memory, inhibition) of older adults and were sensitive to aging. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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12 pages, 549 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Physical Activity on Depressive Symptoms among Urban and Rural Older Adults: Empirical Study Based on the 2018 CHARLS Database
by Xueyu Jin, Huasen Liu and Eksiri Niyomsilp
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(10), 864; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13100864 - 21 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1391
Abstract
Using data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study 2018, we employed the propensity score matching method to examine the effect of physical activity on depressive symptoms among older adults across rural and urban areas. The study sample consisted of 5055 participants, [...] Read more.
Using data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study 2018, we employed the propensity score matching method to examine the effect of physical activity on depressive symptoms among older adults across rural and urban areas. The study sample consisted of 5055 participants, with urban and rural populations representing 31.3% and 68.7%, respectively. This study found that rural older adult individuals exhibited a greater incidence of depressive symptoms and lower physical activity levels when compared to their urban counterparts. Engagement in high-intensity physical activity was identified as an effective method for mitigating depressive symptoms among older adults. However, the moderating effects of physical activity were only observed among urban older adult individuals. Our findings revealed a cross-sectional correlation between physical activity and depressive symptoms among older adult Chinese individuals, and this link differed between urban and rural areas. Although high-intensity physical activity has a positive effect on depressive symptoms among older adults, physical activity interventions should sufficiently consider the variations in older adults’ living conditions and environments due to urban–rural differences so that interventions can be customized to improve the mental health of older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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9 pages, 310 KiB  
Communication
Physical Activity among Elderly Teachers Working in Basic Education Schools
by Nayra Suze Souza e Silva, Luana Lemos Leão, Rose Elizabeth Cabral Barbosa, Rosângela Ramos Veloso Silva, Tatiana Almeida de Magalhães, Cristina Andrade Sampaio, Luiza Augusta Rosa Rossi-Barbosa, Adriane Mesquita de Medeiros and Desirée Sant’Ana Haikal
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(10), 841; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13100841 - 14 Oct 2023
Viewed by 865
Abstract
This study aimed to assess the levels of physical activity (PA) among elderly teachers. It was an epidemiological, cross-sectional, and analytical web survey conducted with teachers working in public basic education schools. Data collection took place between October and December 2021 through an [...] Read more.
This study aimed to assess the levels of physical activity (PA) among elderly teachers. It was an epidemiological, cross-sectional, and analytical web survey conducted with teachers working in public basic education schools. Data collection took place between October and December 2021 through an online form. The dependent variable was physical activity practice, classifying teachers as either physically active or inactive. Descriptive, bivariate, and multiple analyses were performed using Poisson Regression with robust variance. A total of 1907 teachers participated in the study, of whom 5.6% were elderly, ranging in age from 60 to 72 years. Regarding PA practice, elderly teachers were found to be more physically inactive compared with adult teachers (PR = 1.18; 95% CI = 1.04; 1.34). Conclusion: A statistically significant difference in PA practice was observed between adult and elderly teachers, indicating that elderly teachers are more physically inactive. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
11 pages, 251 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Regular Exercise on Life Satisfaction, Self-Esteem, and Self-Efficacy in Older Adults
by Turhan Toros, Emre Bulent Ogras, Ali Burak Toy, Abdulaziz Kulak, Huseyin Tolga Esen, Sevket Cihat Ozer and Talip Celik
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(9), 714; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13090714 - 28 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2215
Abstract
This study employed the correlational survey model to examine how regular exercise influenced life satisfaction, self-esteem, and self-efficacy in men over 65. The study sample included a total of 215 participants, of whom 110 exercised regularly (for at least 45 min, three times [...] Read more.
This study employed the correlational survey model to examine how regular exercise influenced life satisfaction, self-esteem, and self-efficacy in men over 65. The study sample included a total of 215 participants, of whom 110 exercised regularly (for at least 45 min, three times a week), while 105 engaged in no physical exercise. Regular exercisers were found to score significantly higher on life satisfaction, self-esteem, and self-efficacy scales as compared to non-exercisers. These scores also increased significantly with age and prolonged exercise history. A moderate and positive correlation was detected between life satisfaction, self-esteem, and self-efficacy among regular exercisers, while non-exercisers showed low to moderate correlations. The findings suggest that regular exercise can enhance life satisfaction, self-esteem, and self-efficacy in the elderly male population. Such effects appear to be associated with greater age and lifetime exercise history, highlighting the value of regular physical exercise in improving the quality of life among older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
11 pages, 772 KiB  
Article
Dual-Task Performance, Balance and Aerobic Capacity as Predictors of Falls in Older Adults with Cardiovascular Disease: A Comparative Study
by Heitor Silveira, Juliana Lima, Jessica Plácido, José Vinícius Ferreira, Renan Ferreira, Jerson Laks and Andrea Deslandes
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(6), 488; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13060488 - 09 Jun 2023
Viewed by 1206
Abstract
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are highly prevalent and strongly associated with the risk of falls in the elderly. Falls are associated with impairments in cognition and functional or gait performance; however, little is known about these associations in the elderly population with CVD. In [...] Read more.
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are highly prevalent and strongly associated with the risk of falls in the elderly. Falls are associated with impairments in cognition and functional or gait performance; however, little is known about these associations in the elderly population with CVD. In this study, we aimed to clarify the possible associations of physical capacity and functional and cognitive outcomes with the incidence of falls in older adults with CVD. In this comparative study, 72 elderly patients were divided into fallers (n = 24 cases) and non-fallers (n = 48 controls) according to the occurrence of falls within one year. Machine learning techniques were adopted to formulate a classification model and identify the most important variables associated with the risk of falls. Participants with the worst cardiac health classification, older age, the worst cognitive and functional performance, balance and aerobic capacity were prevalent in the case group. The variables of most importance for the machine learning model were VO2max, dual-task in seconds and the Berg Scale. There was a significant association between cognitive-motor performance and the incidence of falls. Dual-task performance, balance, and aerobic capacity levels were associated with an increased risk of falls, in older adults with CVD, during a year of observation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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11 pages, 433 KiB  
Article
The Association between a Minimum Amount of Physical Activity and Subsequent Muscle Strength and Balance in Older Adults: A Prospective Study
by Yuan-Yu Li, Ming-Chun Hsueh, Jong-Hwan Park, Ting-Fu Lai, Yi-Chuan Hung and Yung Liao
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(4), 316; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13040316 - 06 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1449
Abstract
This study aimed to investigate the association between 15 min of daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and subsequent muscle strength and balance in older adults. Data concerning community-dwelling older Taiwanese adults (mean age, 69.5 years) were collected during the baseline period (2018) and [...] Read more.
This study aimed to investigate the association between 15 min of daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and subsequent muscle strength and balance in older adults. Data concerning community-dwelling older Taiwanese adults (mean age, 69.5 years) were collected during the baseline period (2018) and at a 12-month follow-up survey (2019). Time spent performing MVPA was objectively assessed using a triaxial accelerometer (ActiGraph wGT3x-BT) at baseline. Upper and lower limb muscle strength were measured using handgrip strength and a five-times sit-to-stand test, respectively. Balance was assessed using a one-leg standing test. The 12-month variations in muscle strength and balance were calculated through subtracting follow-up data from baseline data. A forced entry-adjusted logistic regression analysis was conducted. In total, 65.2% of participants engaged in at least 15 min of daily MVPA in the baseline survey. After adjusting for confounders, older adults who achieved 15 min of daily MVPA during the baseline period were more likely to maintain or improve balance performance (odds ratio, 8.12). Performing 15 min of daily MVPA was found to benefit older adults’ subsequent balance performance but not muscle strength. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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Review

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19 pages, 2487 KiB  
Review
Effect of Dancing Interventions on Depression and Anxiety Symptoms in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
by Tiago Paiva Prudente, Eleazar Mezaiko, Erika Aparecida Silveira and Túlio Eduardo Nogueira
Behav. Sci. 2024, 14(1), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs14010043 - 10 Jan 2024
Viewed by 1398
Abstract
This systematic review and meta-analysis (PROSPERO CRD42023428105) investigated the effect of dancing on depression and anxiety symptoms in older adults. Conducted up to October 2023, the search across seven databases and gray literature yielded 5020 records. Only randomized trials that analyzed dance interventions [...] Read more.
This systematic review and meta-analysis (PROSPERO CRD42023428105) investigated the effect of dancing on depression and anxiety symptoms in older adults. Conducted up to October 2023, the search across seven databases and gray literature yielded 5020 records. Only randomized trials that analyzed dance interventions for depression and/or anxiety in older adults were included. Nineteen randomized trials, involving 508 participants in dance classes lasting 5 weeks to 18 months, were included and 16 were subjected to meta-analysis. Risk of bias was assessed using the Cochrane tool. The meta-analysis showed a statistically significant reduction in depression among older adults participating in dance interventions (p < 0.01). A decrease in depressive symptoms was significant compared to that in those involved in no other intervention (p = 0.02) but not compared to that achieved with other interventions in control groups (p = 0.96). Subgroup analysis showed no significant differences in depression scores for those with mild cognitive impairment (p = 0.47). These conclusions are associated with moderate bias and very low certainty. Due to heterogeneity and the small number of studies, conclusions for anxiety outcomes could not be drawn. These results underscore the potential clinical relevance of integrating dance into mental health interventions for older adults, thereby highlighting a promising avenue for enhancing the mental well-being of this demographic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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20 pages, 677 KiB  
Review
Factors Affecting Physical Activity in People with Dementia: A Systematic Review and Narrative Synthesis
by Ruth W. Feenstra, Liese J. E. de Bruin and Marieke J. G. van Heuvelen
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(11), 913; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13110913 - 08 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1541
Abstract
Physical activity (PA) has positive effects on the physical and cognitive functioning of people with dementia. Knowledge about what limits and stimulates people with dementia to participate in PA is essential to promote effective PA implementation and enhance PA levels. Previous reviews primarily [...] Read more.
Physical activity (PA) has positive effects on the physical and cognitive functioning of people with dementia. Knowledge about what limits and stimulates people with dementia to participate in PA is essential to promote effective PA implementation and enhance PA levels. Previous reviews primarily included opinion-based studies, using data from interviews, focus groups or dyads. By including implementation studies, we aimed to elaborate on previous reviews by identifying new barriers to PA and new facilitators and motivators for PA. We conducted systematic searches in Pubmed, PsychInfo and Web of Science for studies published up to the 21st of September 2021. Search terms were related to the population of people with dementia, PA interventions and implementation outcomes. Studies were included if PA participation was investigated during actual PA implementation. No restrictions were made regarding study design, date of publication, PA type or outcome measures. Studies not implementing PA or not evaluating the implementation were excluded. Based on 13 empirical studies, we identified 35 barriers, 19 facilitators and 12 motivators. Of these, 21 barriers, 11 facilitators and 4 motivators were not identified by previous reviews. New factors are related to the support for people with dementia from informal and formal caregivers, e.g., revealing the importance of a trusting relationship. Furthermore, support for staff from the institution or an external party is needed to overcome doubts about PA, for example, related to safety and effects. New factors also suggested specific recommendations for the content and organization of the PA intervention, for instance, related to how to give instructions. Overall, factors affecting PA identified with opinion-based or implementation studies are complementary. Our extended overview shows the complexity of PA implementation and may help to personalize PA, develop implementation strategies, facilitate actual PA implementation and free up resources needed for effective implementation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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16 pages, 2949 KiB  
Review
Effects of Physical Exercise on Cerebral Blood Velocity in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta−Analysis
by Tiago Paiva Prudente, Henrique Nunes Pereira Oliva, Isabela Oliveira Oliva, Eleazar Mezaiko and Renato Sobral Monteiro-Junior
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(10), 847; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13100847 - 16 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1335
Abstract
As the older population grows, there is an increasing interest in understanding how physical exercise can counteract the changes seen with aging. The benefits of exercise to general health, and especially to the cardiovascular system, have been a topic of discussion for decades. [...] Read more.
As the older population grows, there is an increasing interest in understanding how physical exercise can counteract the changes seen with aging. The benefits of exercise to general health, and especially to the cardiovascular system, have been a topic of discussion for decades. However, there is still a need to elucidate the effects of training programs on the cerebrovascular blood velocity in older people. This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to investigate the effect of physical exercise on the cerebral blood velocity in older people (PROSPERO CRD42019136305). A search was performed on PubMed, Web of Science, EBSCO, ScienceDirect, and Scopus from the inception of this study to October 2023, retrieving 493 results, of which 26 were included, analyzing more than 1000 participants. An overall moderate risk of bias was found for the studies using the Cochrane risk-of-bias tools for randomized and non-randomized clinical trials. The pooled results of randomized trials showed that older people who underwent physical exercise presented a statistically significant increase in cerebral blood velocity (3.58; 95%CI = 0.51, 6.65; p = 0.02). This result indicates that physical exercise is important to help maintain cerebral health in older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Activity and Aging)
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