Health information behaviour, attitudes towards health information and motivating factors for encouraging physical activity among older people: differences by sex and age

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Heidi Enwald, Maarit Kangas, Niina Keränen, Milla Immonen, Heidi Similä, Timo Jämsä, Raija Korpelainen
Place: Borås
Publication year: 2017
Journal: Information Research
Volume number: 22
Issue number: 1


Introduction. Difficulties in understanding health
information and negative attitudes may form a barrier for effective
information use by older people. This study seeks to increase the
understanding of health information behaviour, as well as attitudes
towards health information and motivating factors for encouraging
physical activity in older people. The main focus is on information
about physical activity and comparing sexes and different age groups.

Method. Population-based data were collected with a
questionnaire survey in the GASEL study. A random sample of 1,500 adults
65 years or older was obtained from the Finnish Population Register
Centre. The number of respondents was 918 with a response rate of 61.2%.

Analysis. The statistical significance of the differences between the sexes and age groups were compared using non-parametric tests.

Results. Women were more likely to have shared
information with others related to physical activity. Men were more
likely to consider that health related stories and articles were overly
long and scientific and that ipsative and normative comparison motivates
them. The older the respondents were the more likely they were to avoid
information and to agree that health information is often too long and
scientific and mostly aimed at young people. The younger the respondents
were the more eagerly they preferred ipsative comparison and considered
information given by different physical activity monitors as
motivating. The oldest age group (80 years or older) especially had
difficulties with understanding and accepting health information.

Conclusion. Older adults need health information in an
easily understandable and accessible form. When possible, the
information provided should be tailored for the recipient.

Last updated on 2019-22-10 at 04:54