Social patterning of physical activity over the lifecourse: evidence from three age cohorts in the West of Scotland Twenty-07 study

Hannah, M.-K. , Benzeval, M., and Popham, F. (2014) Social patterning of physical activity over the lifecourse: evidence from three age cohorts in the West of Scotland Twenty-07 study. European Journal of Public Health, 24(S2), (doi:10.1093/eurpub/cku151.100)

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Publisher's URL: http://eurpub.oxfordjournals.org/content/24/suppl_2/cku151.100

Abstract

Background Current WHO guidelines suggest that adults should achieve a minimum of 150 minutes per week of moderate intensity physical activity. The aim of this study is to examine differences in levels of activity from leisure, work, and housework by social class over almost two decades in three age cohorts. This will indicate which groups are achieving the guidelines and where future health interventions should be targeted. Methods Data were collected on up to four occasions (from 1991/92 to 2007/08) for 1655 men and 1962 women in three cohorts born in the 1970s, the 1950s, and the 1930s. Total minutes of at least moderate activity were calculated based on questions on leisure time, heavy housework, and heavy paid work. Social class was based on head of household occupation at the baseline in 1987. Longitudinal growth curve modelling was carried out using Stata. Results The preliminary results show the average predicted probability of achieving 150 minutes per week was higher in men than in women but that for each gender the pattern of variation by age and social class was broadly similar. The predicted probability of achieving 150 minutes increased with age for those in their 20 s, and declined with age for those over 40, with the steepest decline in those over 60. There was very little social class variation among those in their 20 s with predicted probabilities of achieving 150 minutes increasing between ages 24 and 36 from 0.7 to 0.85 for men and from 0.5 to 0.7 for women. For those in their 40 s, the divide between social classes grew with time and, for example, in women the predicted probability of achieving 150 minutes was around 0.55 at age 40 but by age 57 it had declined to 0.51 for non-manual and to 0.43 for manual social classes. This social class difference persisted in those over 60. Conclusions The predicted probability of achieving the physical activity guidelines increased with age for those in their 20s but decreased with age for those over 40. Social class differences were absent among those in their 20s and 30s but widened for those aged over 40. This suggests that young adults are embracing the physical activity advice but that further interventions could be targeted at the over 40s, particularly those in manual social classes.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hannah, Mrs Mary-Kate and Popham, Dr Timothy and Benzeval, Dr Michaela
Authors: Hannah, M.-K., Benzeval, M.,, and Popham, F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO Unit
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Journal Name:European Journal of Public Health
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:1101-1262
ISSN (Online):1464-360X
Published Online:31 October 2014

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
656621Social Patterning of Health over the LifecourseTimothy PophamMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/7IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU