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Influence of COVID-19 Restrictions on Physical Activity Levels of Older Adults
The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in physical activity restrictions for older adults living in long-term care and retirement homes and in the community. To date, we do not have data to quantify how much the restrictions reduced physical activity, or how the restrictions impacted cardiovascular health.
In the Influence of COVID-19 Restrictions on Physical Activity Levels of Older Adults study, older adults were asked to wear, for 3-days, a small heart rate monitor that also measures physical activity levels. Data was collected during pandemic restrictions (i.e., when structured physical activity classes were cancelled in retirement homes and community centres). Data was also collected once those restrictions were removed. This allowed the research team to determine the impact of restrictions on physical activity during daily living, and how a person’s heart rate responds to this activity. The heart rate to activity relationship is an indictor of physical fitness. It is anticipated that after the restrictions are removed, there will be more activity in daily life, and the fitness indicator will improve. These results can help to encourage older adults to maintain active lifestyles for healthy aging.
Richard Hughson, PhD, FRSC, FCAHS
Schlegel Research Chair in Vascular Aging and Brain Health; Senior Director of Research
Carmelo Mastrandrea, PhD, MD
- Eric Hedge, University of Waterloo
- Roxy Fournier, Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA)
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