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Association between low level of physical activity and mobility limitation in older adults: evidence from the SABE study

Associação entre baixo nível de atividade física e limitação de mobilidade em idoso: evidência do estudo SABE

Igor Conterato Gomes Leônidas de Oliveira Neto Vagner Deuel de Oliveira Tavares Yeda Aparecida de Oliveira Duarte About the authors


Several studies are limited by verifying the level of physical activity with questionnaires and not through objective measurement in older adults. This article aims to analyze the association between a low level of physical activity with accelerometry) and mobility limitation in older adults. A population-based cross-sectional study conducted with 543 older adults. Multiple regression analysis was performed using hierarchical analysis, grouping the variables into two blocks ordered according to the precedence with which they acted on the outcomes. Among the evaluated older adults, 13.7% presented mobility limitations and among these 60.39% were in the low level of physical activity group. Older adults with a low level of physical activity (OR = 3.49 [2.0 - 6.13]), aged 75 and over (OR = 1.97 [1.03 - 3.72]), living without a partner (OR = 2.01 [1.09 - 3.68]), having difficulty performing basic (OR = 2.49 [1.45 - 4.28]) and instrumental (OR = 2.28) [1.18 - 4.36]) activities of daily life, and multimorbidity (OR = 2.06 [1.04 - 4.08]) were independently associated with mobility limitation. A low level of physical activity increases the chance of mobility limitation in older adults, regardless of sociodemographic and clinical variables.

Key words:
Ageing; Epidemiology; Motor activity; Mobility limitation

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