Despite considerable research and programmatic efforts to alleviate racial/ethnic disparities in physical activity (PA), disparities in PA among older minorities and major racial ethnic groups persist. This study explored perceptions of PA among regularly active (RA) and insufficiently active (IA) older African American women (AAW) and the factors that influence (positively and negatively) their physical participation in their socio-cultural environment. A total of 20 AAW aged 60 to 80 years participated in a cross-sectional mixed-methods study (i.e., qualitative and quantitative) employing participatory research approaches (i.e., photoelicitation) along with an objective assessment of PA. Nine women were considered RA and 11 IA according to current PA recommendations. RA and IA women held two major beliefs about the nature of PA (i.e., PA as a broadly defined construct that goes beyond traditional exercise routines; and PA and exercise are synonymous and can be used interchangeably) and had a good understanding of its benefits. Participants in both groups did not know about the importance of PA intensity for health benefits. Barriers and facilitator of PA were found to be similar among RA and IA participants. Special attention should be paid to providing access to no or low cost opportunities for PA participation in safe environments.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)