247741 Physical activity levels of older Latina women living in rural and urban communities

Monday, October 31, 2011

Kathryn Mazurek, MPH , Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL
Emily Parrott, BS , Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois-Urbana, Champaign, IL
Wojtek Chodzko-Zajko, PhD , Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
David X. Marquez, PhD , Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Salva Najib Balbale, MS , Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL
Yvette Castaneda , Health Policy Administration, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Andiara Schwingel, Assistant Prof , Department of Kinesiology and Community Health, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
Despite the known health benefits of physical activity (PA), participation rates are low among older Latina women, a particularly vulnerable group for physical inactivity for whom public health messages appear to be less effective. Also, disparities in the availability of PA resources are known to exist between rural and urban populations. The main purpose of this study was to increase our understanding of the levels of PA among older Latina women residing in urban and rural communities. Using a mixed methods design, this study explored the socio-cultural and structural factors that shape their PA behavior. Data was collected from 37 older women (aged 71.9 7.6 yr) of Mexican background (n=14 and 23, from rural and urban settings, respectively) living in Illinois. Accelerometer data show an overall low level of participation in moderate-intensity PA, with significant differences (p=0.03) between rural (25.8 7.8 min/wk) and urban (96.2 23.6 min/wk) subjects. Also, rural women were significantly (p=0.04) less likely to meet the 2008 DHHS PA recommendation guidelines (150 min/wk of moderate-intensity PA) than their urban counterparts (rural 100% inactive, urban 73.9 % inactive). Structured interviews using photo elicitation procedures revealed wide variation between older Latina women living in rural and urban settings in how PA is perceived. Wide variation is also revealed in factors that are seen to facilitate or obstruct healthy lifestyle choices. Our findings highlight to the importance of developing culturally meaningful strategies to increase PA levels among older Latina women.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture

Learning Objectives:
Identify the differences in physical activity between rural and urban older Latina women.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am part of the research team that conducted the research.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.