Attitudes and beliefs that predict older people's intention to undertake strength and balance training

J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci. 2007 Mar;62(2):P119-25. doi: 10.1093/geronb/62.2.p119.


Many older people refuse to participate in programs of strength and balance training (SBT), limiting their effectiveness for falls prevention. To persuade older people to take up SBT, we need to know whether their intention to undertake SBT is motivated by the perceived threat of falling or the perceived suitability and benefits of SBT. A survey of 558 people aged 60 to 95 years assessed intention to undertake SBT, as well as measures of threat appraisal (concern about falling, perceived risk, and consequences of falling) and coping appraisal (perceived benefits and appropriateness for them of undertaking SBT). Intention to undertake SBT was much more closely related to all elements of coping appraisal than to threat appraisal. The elements of coping appraisal included the belief that it has multiple benefits and is associated with a positive social identity, and the feeling that family, friends, and doctors would approve of taking part.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls / prevention & control*
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / physiology
  • Aging / psychology*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Psychological
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires