Recent nation-wide data on self-reported leisure-time physical inactivity reveals that about one third of the American population age 50 and over is sedentary. Several national organizations are promoting leisure-time physical activity among older adults as a strategy for this population to adapt to age-related declines in mental and physical functioning and to improve their quality of life. Inferences from past research suggest that social support is significant in enabling older adults to achieve better health outcomes. Unfortunately, little is known about the relationship between health and wellbeing of older adults depending upon the amount and type of social support received for leisure activities, i.e., social support for leisure (SSL). In this study, we investigated the influence of SSL sources (family members, friends, and acquaintances) on physical activity levels and wellbeing, i.e., life satisfaction, stress, and health among older adults (age 50 and over). Study findings highlighted the importance of support from friends for increasing leisure and recreational physical activity participation among older adults. Findings revealed that both family and friends’ support for leisure had positive effects on older adults’ perception of wellbeing. Another important finding in this study was the positive relationship between family social support for leisure and the respondents’ life-satisfaction levels.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management