Home-based physical activity program improves depression and anxiety in older adults

Susan Aguinaga, Diane K. Ehlers, Elizabeth A. Salerno, Jason Fanning, Robert W. Motl, Edward McAuley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Late-life depression and anxiety among older adults is an important public health concern. This study examined the effect of a DVD-delivered exercise intervention on the secondary outcomes of depression and anxiety in older adults and the extent to which physical self-worth mediated the relationship between leisure-Time physical activity and depression and anxiety. Methods: Older adults (N = 307) were randomized to a 6-month flexibility, toning, and balance DVD (FlexToBa™, FTB) or healthy aging DVD control. Self-reported physical activity and questionnaires were administered at baseline and postintervention. Statistical analyses were conducted in the total sample and in a subsample of participants with elevated levels of depression or anxiety. Results: FTB participants with elevated depression and anxiety symptoms at baseline had significantly greater reductions in depression and anxiety (d = 1.66 and 2.90) than the control condition (d = 0.77 and 0.73). The effect of physical activity on depression and anxiety was partially mediated by increases in physical self-worth in the total sample but not in those with elevated depression or anxiety. Conclusion: A home-based physical activity intervention may be a viable treatment for reducing depression and anxiety in older adults with elevated baseline scores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)692-696
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Volume15
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2018

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Anxiety
Depression
Leisure Activities
Public Health

Keywords

  • Aging
  • Exercise
  • Mental health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Cite this

Home-based physical activity program improves depression and anxiety in older adults. / Aguinaga, Susan; Ehlers, Diane K.; Salerno, Elizabeth A.; Fanning, Jason; Motl, Robert W.; McAuley, Edward.

In: Journal of Physical Activity and Health, Vol. 15, No. 9, 09.2018, p. 692-696.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Aguinaga, Susan ; Ehlers, Diane K. ; Salerno, Elizabeth A. ; Fanning, Jason ; Motl, Robert W. ; McAuley, Edward. / Home-based physical activity program improves depression and anxiety in older adults. In: Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 2018 ; Vol. 15, No. 9. pp. 692-696.
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