263373 Participation in recreation activities in a sample of aging population with disabilities

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Annie Alonso-Amador, PsyD, MSW , Graduate School of Public Health, Institute on Developmental Disabilities, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR
Ilia Torres-Avillan, MS , Graduate School of Public Health, Institute on Developmental Disabilities, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR
Karla Davila-Cruz, BA , Graduate School of Social Work, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR
Mario H. Rodríguez, PhD , Graduate School of Public Health, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR
Participation in recreation activities provides mental and physical benefits to older people. However, information is poor about the recreation of aging people with disabilities in Puerto Rico. Research about people with disabilities suggests they have more challenges comparing with those without disabilities in terms of recreation opportunities. The aim of this descriptive study goes to explore the perception, interests and barriers of the older adults with disabilities about recreation. A total sample of 51 participants of 55 years old or more were recruited from Independent Living Centers (ILC) specialize in people with disability in the north, northeast and south municipalities of Puerto Rico. A semi-structured questionnaire was used through interview. The questionnaire included demographic information, an inventory of recreation interests, level of satisfaction with recreation opportunities and the barriers they found to access services. Overall, the results indicate the sample was composed by 70.6% females and 29.4% males. Participants between 71 years old or more made up the largest group with 39.2%. In terms of education, over 72% had high school degree or more. Significant differences between satisfied and dissatisfied people were observed by health conditions (p=.036), cost of recreation services (p=.020), to know about recreation activities (p=.005), need companionship (p=.025), need information of places offering recreation and sports activities (p=.017). The findings suggest people with disability should consider cost, health condition and companionship to participate in recreation activities. Agencies and professionals working with aging people with disabilities due consider these factors in order to provide more inclusive recreational services.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Participants will be able to: Describe the relationship between disability and recreation in the aging population with disabilities. Identify barriers afecting the participation in recreation activities as described by the aging population with disability.

Keywords: Disability, Aging

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Dr. Alonso is full professor of the Human Development Department of the Graduate School of Public Health and have been working in the disability field for the last 20 years, the last ten as the Director of the PR-University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disability.
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.