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The impact of social restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic on the physical activity levels of adults aged 50-92 years: a baseline survey of the CHARIOT COVID-19 Rapid Response prospective cohort study

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Title: The impact of social restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic on the physical activity levels of adults aged 50-92 years: a baseline survey of the CHARIOT COVID-19 Rapid Response prospective cohort study
Authors: Salman, D
Beaney, T
Robb, C
Loots, CADJ
Giannakopoulou, P
Udeh-Momoh, C
Ahmadi Abhari, S
Majeed, F
Middleton, LT
McGregor, AH
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Objectives: Physical inactivity is more common in older adults, is associated with social isolation and loneliness, and contributes to increased morbidity and mortality. We examined the effect of social restrictions to reduce COVID-19 transmission in the UK (lockdown), on physical activity (PA) levels of older adults, and the social predictors of any change. Design: Baseline analysis of a survey-based prospective cohort study Setting: Adults enrolled in the Cognitive Health in Ageing Register for Investigational and Observational Trials (CHARIOT) cohort from General Practitioner (GP) practices in North West London were invited to participate from April to July 2020. Participants: 6,219 cognitively healthy adults aged 50 to 92 years completed the survey. Main outcome measures: Self-reported PA before and after the introduction of lockdown, as measured by Metabolic Equivalent of Task (MET) minutes. Associations of PA with demographic, lifestyle and social factors, mood and frailty. Results: Mean PA was significantly lower following the introduction of lockdown, from 3,519 MET minutes/week to 3,185 MET minutes/week (p<0.001). After adjustment for confounders and pre-lockdown PA, lower levels of PA after the introduction of lockdown were found in those who were over 85 years old (640 [95% CI: 246 to 1034] MET minutes/week less); were divorced or single (240 [95% CI: 120 to 360] MET minutes/week less); living alone (277 [95% CI: 152 to 402] MET minutes/week less); reported feeling lonely often (306 [95% CI: 60 to 552] MET minutes/week less); and showed symptoms of depression (1007 [95% CI: 1401 to 612] MET minutes/week less) compared to those aged 50-64 years, married, co-habiting, and not reporting loneliness or depression, respectively. Conclusions and Implications: Markers of social isolation, loneliness and depression were associated with lower PA following the introduction of lockdown in the UK. Targeted interventions to increase PA in these groups should be considered. Strengths and limitations of this study: - Out of 40,000 people contacted, 7320 responded and 6219 completed the survey - A significant reduction in mean levels of physical activity were found in older adults after the introduction of lockdown measures. - Multivariable analyses were adjusted for confounders according to pre-determined causal pathways - Survey responders identified predominantly as White/Caucasian background, and showed higher levels of physical activity than the general population, which may limit the generalisability of the findings to other population groups - The potential for recall bias from using a self-report questionnaire for physical activity levels (International Physical Activity Questionnaire – IPAQ). This includes reliance on recall for pre-lockdown PA levels
Issue Date: 25-Aug-2021
Date of Acceptance: 4-Aug-2021
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/90845
DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2021-050680
ISSN: 2044-6055
Publisher: BMJ Journals
Start Page: 1
End Page: 12
Journal / Book Title: BMJ Open
Volume: 11
Copyright Statement: © Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2021. Re-use permitted under CC BY. Published by BMJ. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported (CC BY 4.0) license, which permits others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon this work for any purpose, provided the original work is properly cited, a link to the licence is given, and indication of whether changes were made. See: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Sponsor/Funder: National Institute for Health Research Applied Research Collaboration North West London
Keywords: COVID-19
geriatric medicine
preventive medicine
public health
sports medicine
1103 Clinical Sciences
1117 Public Health and Health Services
1199 Other Medical and Health Sciences
Publication Status: Published
Online Publication Date: 2021-08-25
Appears in Collections:Department of Surgery and Cancer
Faculty of Medicine
Imperial College London COVID-19
School of Public Health



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