Ethnic differences in exercise and leisure time physical activity among midlife women.


Journal Article

AIM: This paper is a report of a study of factors associated with ethnic differences in exercise and leisure time physical activity levels among midlife women. BACKGROUND: Most studies on physical activity have focused mostly on identifying correlates of physical activity. However, 'ethnicity/race' as a factor affecting exercise and leisure time physical activity has rarely been considered. METHOD: This study was a secondary analysis of data from a larger Internet study on menopausal symptoms of midlife women from four ethnic groups in the United States of America. A total of 441 women aged 40-60 years were recruited through the Internet from 31 January 2005 to 31 December 2007. The data were analysed using descriptive statistics, chi-square analysis, analysis of variance and multiple regressions. FINDINGS: Non-Hispanic White people had a statistically significantly higher level of leisure time physical activity than Asian Americans and Hispanics. African Americans reported the lowest level of exercise. Body mass index was inversely associated with exercise among African Americans. Menopausal symptoms were positively associated with exercise among non-Hispanic White people and African Americans. Employment and number of children had a statistically significantly inverse association with exercise among Asian Americans. CONCLUSION: Correlates of exercise are ethnic-specific. The dual role situation of working outside and inside their homes is an important factor in explaining the lower participation of exercise among Asian Americans. Health factors influence exercise participation in non-Hispanic White people, African Americans and Hispanics. Nurses should take into account ethnic diversities when designing physical activity interventions for women.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Lee, SH; Im, E-O

Published Date

  • April 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 66 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 814 - 827

PubMed ID

  • 20423369

Pubmed Central ID

  • 20423369

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1365-2648

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0309-2402

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/j.1365-2648.2009.05242.x


  • eng