Social support and the likelihood of maintaining and improving levels of physical activity

The Whitehall II Study

Anne Kouvonen, Roberto De Vogli, Mai Stafford, Martin J. Shipley, Michael G. Marmot, Tom Cox, Jussi Vahtera, Ari Väänänen, Tarja Heponiemi, Archana Singh-Manoux, Mika Kivimäki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

42 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Evidence on the association between social support and leisure time physical activity (LTPA) is scarce and mostly based on cross-sectional data with different types of social support collapsed into a single index. The aim of this study was to investigate whether social support from the closest person was associated with LTPA. Methods: Prospective cohort study of 5395 adults (mean age 55.7 year 3864 men) participating in the British Whitehall II study. Confiding/emotional support and practical support were assessed at baseline in 1997-99 using the Close Persons Questionnaire. LTPA was assessed at baseline and follow-up in (2002-04). Baseline covariates included socio-demographic self-rated healt long-standing illnesse physical functioning and common mental disorders. Results: Among participants who reported recommended levels of LTPA at baselin those who experienced high confiding/emotional support were more likely to report recommended levels of LTPA at follow-up [odds ratio (OR): 1.39, 95 confidence interval (CI): 1.12-1.70 in a model adjusted for baseline covariates]. Among those participants who did not meet the recommended target of LTPA at baselin high confiding/emotional support was not associated with improvement in activity levels. High practical support was associated with both maintaining (OR: 1.34, 95 CI: 1.10-1.63) and improving (OR: 1.25, 95 CI: 1.02-1.53) LTPA levels. Conclusion: These findings suggest that emotional and practical support from the closest person may help the individual to maintain the recommended level of LTPA. Practical support also predicted a change towards a more active lifestyle. 2011. The Author(s)2011This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0), which permits unrestricted non-commercial us distributio and reproduction in any mediu provided the original work is properly cited.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)514-518
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Volume22
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2012
Externally publishedYes

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Leisure Activities
Social Support
Exercise
Odds Ratio
Confidence Intervals
Licensure
Mental Disorders
Reproduction
Life Style
Cohort Studies
Demography
Prospective Studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Kouvonen, A., De Vogli, R., Stafford, M., Shipley, M. J., Marmot, M. G., Cox, T., ... Kivimäki, M. (2012). Social support and the likelihood of maintaining and improving levels of physical activity: The Whitehall II Study. European Journal of Public Health, 22(4), 514-518. https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckr091

Social support and the likelihood of maintaining and improving levels of physical activity : The Whitehall II Study. / Kouvonen, Anne; De Vogli, Roberto; Stafford, Mai; Shipley, Martin J.; Marmot, Michael G.; Cox, Tom; Vahtera, Jussi; Väänänen, Ari; Heponiemi, Tarja; Singh-Manoux, Archana; Kivimäki, Mika.

In: European Journal of Public Health, Vol. 22, No. 4, 08.2012, p. 514-518.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kouvonen, A, De Vogli, R, Stafford, M, Shipley, MJ, Marmot, MG, Cox, T, Vahtera, J, Väänänen, A, Heponiemi, T, Singh-Manoux, A & Kivimäki, M 2012, 'Social support and the likelihood of maintaining and improving levels of physical activity: The Whitehall II Study', European Journal of Public Health, vol. 22, no. 4, pp. 514-518. https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckr091
Kouvonen, Anne ; De Vogli, Roberto ; Stafford, Mai ; Shipley, Martin J. ; Marmot, Michael G. ; Cox, Tom ; Vahtera, Jussi ; Väänänen, Ari ; Heponiemi, Tarja ; Singh-Manoux, Archana ; Kivimäki, Mika. / Social support and the likelihood of maintaining and improving levels of physical activity : The Whitehall II Study. In: European Journal of Public Health. 2012 ; Vol. 22, No. 4. pp. 514-518.
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