A cross-sectional study on physical and sedentary activity and health-related quality of life in institutionalized vs. non-institutionalized elderly

  • Pablo Tomas-Carus University of Évora
  • Clarissa Biehl-Printes High Institute of Educational Sciences
  • Armando Raimundo University of Évora
  • Luis Laranjo University of Évora
  • Catarina Pereira University of Évora
  • Newton Terra Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul
  • Paulo Sousa High Institute of Educational Sciences
  • Jorge Fernandes University of Évora
Keywords: Motor activity. Sedentary lifestyle. Quality of life. Health of institutionalized elderly.


Aims: To compare the physical activity, sedentary activity and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in institutionalized vs. non-institutionalized elderly, and to establish a pattern of relationship and prediction of physical and sedentary activity with physical and mental components of HRQoL. Methods: The sample consisted of 383 elderly with ≥ 75 years old (n=187 institutionalized and n=196 non-institutionalized). Were administered the International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) and Short Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36) for evaluated the physical and sedentary activity and HRQoL. Also was used the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) as exclusion criteria for cognitive problems in the elderly. Results: Differences between institutionalized and non institutionalized elderly were found in moderate-intensity activities and walking, a favour of non-institutionalized. The institutionalized elderly remain more minutes in sedentary activity. Also, were observed differences between both groups in physical component of HRQoL, a favour of non-institutionalized elderly. The mental component remained unchanged. The multivariate regression analyses showed that physical activity predicted the physical (8 to 12%) and mental (5 to 8%) components of HRQoL for institutionalized and non-institutionalized elderly. Conclusions: Non-institutionalized elderly were more physically active, spent less time in sedentary activity and showed better perception physical component of HRQoL that institutionalized elderly. An important and encouraging result of this study was that physical activity is a predictor of improved physical and mental component of HRQoL for institutionalized and non-institutionalized elderly.


Download data is not yet available.


Olshansky SJ, Carnes BA, Cassel CK. The ageing of the human species. Sci Am. 1993;268:18-24.

Carrilho MJ, Patricio L. The demographic Changes in Portugal. Lisboa: National Institute of Statistics; 2010.

EUROSTAT. Documentation of the 2000 Round of Population and Housing Censures in the EU, EFTA and Candidate Countries. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities; 2004.

European Commission. Long-term care in the European union. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities; 2008.

Luppa M, Luck T, Weyerer S, et al. Prediction of institutionalization in the elderly. A systematic review. Age Ageing. 2010;39:31-38.

Luppa M, Luck T, Matschinger H, et al. Predictors of nursing home admission of individuals without a dementia diagnosis before admission – results from the Leipzig Longitudinal Study of the Aged (LEILA 75+). BMC Health Serv Res. 2010;10:186. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-10-186>.

Wiles J. Conceptualizing place in the care of older people: the contributions of geographical gerontology. J Clin Nurs. 2005;14:100-108.

Lin YP, Huang YH, Lu FH, et al. Non-leisure time physical activity is an independent predictor of longevity for a Taiwanese elderly population: an eight-year follow-up study. BMC Public Health. 2011;11:428. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-11-428>.

Division of Ageing and Seniors: Physical activity and older adults from Canada; 2011. Available at: <http://www.phacaspc.gc.ca/seniors-aines/index-eng.php>. Accessed Sept 10, 2013.

Dechamps A, Diolez P, Thiaudière E, et al. Effects of exercise programs to prevent decline in health-related quality of life in highly deconditioned institutionalized elderly persons: a randomized controlled trial. Arch Intern Med. 2010;170:162-169.

Garber CE, Greaney ML, Riebe D, et al. Physical and mental health related correlates of physical function in community dwelling older adults: a cross sectional study. BMC Geriatr. 2010;10:6. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2318-10-6>.

Buman MP, Hekler EB, Haskell WL, et al. Objective lightintensity physical activity associations with rated health in older adults. Am J Epidemiol. 2010;172:1155-1165.

Vitorino LM, Paskulin LM, Vianna LA. Quality of life of seniors living in the community and in long term care facilities: a comparative study. Rev Lat Am Enfermagem. 2013;21:3-11.

Król-Zielińska M, Kusy K, Zieliński J, et al. Physical activity and functional fitness in institutionalized vs. independently living elderly: a comparison of 70-80-year-old city-dwellers. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2011;53:10-6.

Noro A, Aro S. Health-related quality of life among the least dependent institutional elderly compared with the non-institutional elderly population. Qual Life Res. 1996;5: 355-366.

Salguero A, Martínez-García R, Molinero O, et al. Physical activity, quality of life and symptoms of depression in community-dwelling and institutionalized older adults. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2011;53:152-157.

Dean AG, Sullivan KM, Soe MM. OpenEpi: Open Source Epidemiologic Statistics for Public Health, Version 2.3.1. www.OpenEpi.com, updated 2011/23/06.

Guerreiro M, Silva AP, Botelho M, et al. Adaptação à população portuguesa da tradução do Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE). Revista Portuguesa de Neurologia. 1994;3:9-10.

Craig CL, Marshall AL, Sjostrom M, et al. International physical activity questionnaire: 12-country reliability and validity. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2003;35:1381-1395.

Ciconelli RM, Ferraz MB, Santos W, et al. Tradução para a língua portuguesa e validação do questionário genérico de avaliação de qualidade de vida SF-36 (Brasil SF-36). Rev Bras Reumatol. 1999;39:143-150.

Ware JE, Kosinski M. SF-36 physical & mental health summary scales: A manual for users of version 1. 2nd edition. Lincoln, RI: Quality Metric; 2001.

Asakawa K, Feeny D, Senthilselvan A, et al. Do the determinants of health differ between people living in the community and in institutions? Soc Sci Med. 2009;69: 345-353.

Kim HS, Harada K, Miyashita M, et al. Use of Senior Center and the Health- Related Quality of Life in Korean Older Adults. J Prevent Med Public Health. 2011;44:149-156.

Robichaud L, Durand PJ, Bédard R, et al. Quality of life indicators in long term care: Opinions of elderly residents and their families. Can J Occup Ther. 2006;73: 245-251.

Onder G, Liperoti R, Soldato M, et al. Case management and risk of nursing home admission for older adults in home care: results of the Aged in Home Care Study. J AM Geriatr Soc. 2007;55:439-444.

Sardinha LB, Santos DA, Silva AM, et al. Prevalence of overweight, obesity, and abdominal obesity in a representative sample of Portuguese adults. PLoS One. 2012;7:e47883. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0047883>.

Wen CP, Wai JP, Tsai MK, et al. Minimum amount of physical activity for reduced mortality and extended life expectancy: a prospective cohort study. Lancet. 2011;378:1244-1253.

Sun F, Norman IJ, While AE. Physical activity in older people: a systematic review. BMC Public Health. 2013;13:449. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-13-449>.

Milanović Z, Pantelić S, Trajković N, et al. Age-related decrease in physical activity and functional fitness among elderly men and women. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8: 549-556.

Buchman AS, Wilson RS, Yu L, et al. Total daily activity declines more rapidly with increasing age in older adults. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2013;134:9. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.archger.2013.08.001>.

Gobbi S, Sebastião E, Papini CB, et al. Physical inactivity and related barriers: a study in a community dwelling of older brazilians. J Aging Res. 2012;2012:685190. <http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/685190>.

Matthews CE, Chen KY, Freedson PS, et al. Amount of time spent in sedentary behaviors in the United States, 2003- 2004. Am J Epidemiol. 2008;167:875-881.

Hallal PC, Victora CG, Wells JC, et al. Physical inactivity: prevalence and associated variables in Brazilian adults. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 2003;35:1894-1900.

Acree LS, Longfors J, Fjeldstad AS, et al. Physical activity is related to quality of life in older adults. Health Qual Life Outcomes 2006;4:37.

Guallar-Castillón P, Sendino AR, Banegas JR, et al. Differences in quality of life between women and men in the older population of Spain. Soc Sci Med. 2005;60:1229-1240.

Pate RR, O’Neill JR, Lobelo F. The evolving definition of “sedentary”. Exerc Sport Sci Rev 2008,36:173-178.

Balboa-Castillo T, León-Muñoz LM, Graciani A, et al. Longitudinal association of physical activity and sedentary behavior during leisure time with health-related quality of life in community-dwelling older adults. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2011;9:47.<http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1477-=7525-9-47>.

Lobo A, Santos P, Carvalho J, et al. Relationship between intensity of physical activity and health-related quality of life in Portuguese institutionalized elderly. Geriatr Gerontol Int. 2008;8:284-290.

Fortuño Godes J, Romea Viñets J, Guerra Balic M, et al. Measurement of functional capacity and health related quality of life in an elderly group following a walking program: pilot study. Rev Esp Geriatr Gerontol. 2011;46:147-150.

How to Cite
Tomas-Carus, P., Biehl-Printes, C., Raimundo, A., Laranjo, L., Pereira, C., Terra, N., Sousa, P., & Fernandes, J. (2015). A cross-sectional study on physical and sedentary activity and health-related quality of life in institutionalized vs. non-institutionalized elderly. PAJAR - Pan American Journal of Aging Research, 2(1), 15-22. https://doi.org/10.15448/2357-9641.2014.1.20081
Original Article