The role of informal and formal leisure activities in the disablement process

Megan C. Janke, Laura L. Payne, Marieke Van Puymbroeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The disablement process model has been used as a framework to investigate factors that accelerate or decelerate disablement among older adults. Although very little is known about the direct and moderating effects of involvement in leisure activities on the disablement process, research has suggested that participation in leisure activities may serve as a factor affecting the disablement pathways. Using longitudinal data from individuals aged 65 and older (N = 535) in the Americans' Changing Lives study, we examined the influence of leisure involvement on the disablement process model. Through regression analyses, we found that involvement in informal and formal leisure activities was significantly associated with the disablement process in this sample of older adults, and that the effect of informal and formal leisure on disablement changed across time points and at different phases of the pathway. Results suggest that leisure activities may be protective of cognitive health and mitigate the effect of functional limitations, perceptions of disability, and depressive symptoms among older adults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-257
Number of pages27
JournalInternational Journal of Aging and Human Development
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


Dive into the research topics of 'The role of informal and formal leisure activities in the disablement process'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this