BAILAMOS With mHealth Technology! Improving Physical Activity and Well-Being in Middle-Aged and Older Latinxs: A Pre–Post Feasibility Study

Susan Aguiñaga, Isabela G. Marques, Spyros Kitsiou, Guilherme M. Balbim, Ben S. Gerber, Susan W. Buchholz, Eduardo E. Bustamante, David X. Marquez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Older Latinxs engage in lower levels of leisure-time physical activity (PA) compared with non-Latinx Whites. Latin dance is a culturally relevant type of leisure-time PA that may engage older Latinx populations, particularly when coupled with mobile health technologies (mHealth). This single group pre–post feasibility study described the PA and health outcomes of middle-aged and older Latinxs participating in BAILA TECH—an intervention that combines the BAILAMOS Latin dance program with mHealth (Fitbit Charge 2, Fitbit app, and motivational text messages). Participants (n = 20, Mage = 67 ± 7.1, female n = 15, 75%) were enrolled in the 16-week BAILA TECH intervention held twice a week. Participants received a Fitbit Charge 2 to assess PA at baseline, during the intervention, and postintervention. An mHealth platform (iCardia) collected Fitbit data and staff delivered weekly motivational and informational text messages. Participants completed questionnaires about PA, sedentary behavior, cardiorespiratory fitness, social support, quality of life, and cognitive function at baseline and postintervention. Paired t tests evaluated change in pre–post measures. There was a significant increase in device-assessed moderate-to-vigorous PA (d = 0.69), self-reported light-leisure (d = 1.91) and moderate-to-vigorous PA (d = 1.05), moderate-to-vigorous leisure PA (d = 1.55), predicted cardiorespiratory fitness (d = 1.10), and PA social support (d = 0.81 [family]; d = 0.95 [friends]) from baseline to postintervention. Although nonsignificant, there was a small effect on physical health–related quality of life (d = 0.32) and executive function (d = 0.29). These data describe an increase in PA levels and health-related outcomes of middle-aged and older Latinxs from participation in an mHealth-infused Latin dance intervention. An adequately powered trial is necessary to establish efficacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)575-583
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • dance
  • Hispanics
  • mHealth
  • physical activity
  • wearables

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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