Correlates of changes in walking during the retirement transition: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis.
Retirement from employment involves disruption in daily routines and has been associated with positive and negative changes in physical activity. Walking is the most common physical activity among older Americans. The factors that influence changes in walking after retirement are unknown. The study objective was to identify correlates of within-person change in recreational walking (for leisure) and transport walking (to get places) during the retirement transition among a multi-ethnic cohort of adults (N = 928) from six US communities. Correlates were measured at the individual (e.g., gender), interpersonal (e.g., social support), and community (e.g., density of walking destinations) levels at study exams between 2000 and 2012. Comparing pre- and post-retirement measures (average 4.5 years apart), 50% of participants increased recreational walking by 60 min or more per week, 31% decreased by 60 min or more per week, and 19% maintained their recreational walking. Forty-one percent of participants increased transport walking by 60 min or more per week, 40% decreased by 60 min or more per week, and 19% maintained their transport walking after retirement. Correlates differed for recreational and transport walking and for increases compared to decreases in walking. Self-rated health, chronic conditions, and perceptions of the neighborhood walking environment were associated with changes in both types of walking after retirement. Further, some correlates differed by gender and retirement age. Findings can inform the targeting of interventions to promote walking during the retirement transition.
Jones, SA; Li, Q; Aiello, AE; O'Rand, AM; Evenson, KR
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