Individual social capital benefits older adults' health and well-being: Does physical exercise mediate?
ISPAH ePoster Library. Boen F. Oct 16, 2018; 225137; 506
Filip Boen
Filip Boen
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Abstract It is assumed that social capital enhances the physical health and well-being of older adults both directly as well as indirectly by promoting physical activity. The present study aims to assess the mediating role of physical activity in the relation between individual social capital (i.e., their personal connectedness to society and the community, including social identification) on the one hand, and experienced physical health and well-being on the other hand. A survey study with a cross-sectional (baseline survey – Time 1) and longitudinal (3-year follow-up survey – Time 2) design was conducted. A sample (n = 1,298) of adults (age ≥ 55 years) was invited for participation. Mediation analyses revealed that specific indicators of social capital were positively related to self-rated physical health and well-being at Time 1 and, less pronounced, at Time 2. However, for only one indicator – i.e., experienced safety in society – there was sufficient evidence for a mediating role of physical activity at Time 1 and Time 2. These findings suggest that a mediating role of physical activity in the relation between individual social capital and physical health and well-being exists but in a limited way.
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