The purpose of this study was to describe older adults' social network and support during a physical activity intervention and its association with physical activity. Mixed methods were used for this secondary analysis of existing data from a physical activity intervention. Seventy-three participants who completed a session by telephone on using support comprised the sample. Participants reported on average approximately eight individuals in their social network. Half reported support for physical activity from a spouse/partner, adult child, or friend. Those who perceived support for self-reported physical activity tended to have greater improvements on average from baseline for mean daily minutes of physical activity than those with no perceived support. Four-fifths developed a plan for a spouse/partner, friend, adult child, or sibling to provide physical activity support. Participants reported that the session was helpful and increased their confidence in using support; over one-quarter intended to use support after the intervention ended.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01280903.
Keywords: Comorbidity; Dyads; Exercise; Social network; Social support.
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