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Objective: Excess sedentary time predicts negative health outcomes independent of physical activity. The present investigation examined informal caregiving duties and transportation-related factors as potential correlates of sedentary behavior in older adults. Method: Average daily sedentary time was measured via accelerometer in adults ages 66 years and older (N = 861). Caregiving variables included dog ownership and informal family caregiving status. Transportation variables included driver status, walking distance to public transit, and reported presence of pedestrians and bicyclists in one’s neighborhood. Results: In multivariate models, owning a dog and being a driver were associated with less sedentary time (p ≤ .01). Educational status and geographic region modified the association between dog ownership and sedentary time, and age modified the association between driver status and sedentary time. Discussion: This study identified that older adult dog owners and drivers were less sedentary. Both factors may create opportunities for older adults to get out of their homes.


Institute for Health and Ageing

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Journal Article

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