The continuity of physical activity--a retrospective and prospective study among older people

Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2000 Feb;10(1):37-41. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-0838.2000.010001037.x.


This study investigated the continuity of life-span physical activity by examining the predictors of the maintenance of a high level of physical activity over 8 years among subjects aged 65-84 years at the baseline, in 1988, in Jyväskylä, Finland. Age, education, marital status and chronic conditions and past physical activity were studied at the baseline. In men and women, self-reported competitive sport participation from as early as 10-19 years of age was a significant predictor for maintaining activity in old age. Also women's participation in recreational sports at the age of 40-64 years predicted activity. We concluded that past physical activity is strongly connected to maintaining a high level of physical activity in old age regardless of chronic conditions that may develop.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged*
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Exercise*
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Odds Ratio
  • Physical Fitness*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sports