Outdoor Falls Prevention Strategy Use and Neighborhood Walkability Among Naturally Occurring Retirement Community Residents

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Outdoor falls present a significant challenge to the health and well-being of older adults. Safe strategy use is an important component of falls prevention, yet little is known regarding use of outdoor falls prevention strategies. Aims: To examine outdoor falls prevention strategy use among naturally occurring retirement community residents at risk for falls, and to examine associations with neighborhood walkability. Methods: Descriptive analyses of pretest data from an intervention study (N = 97) were conducted to examine frequency of outdoor falls prevention strategy use. Walk Score® data were added to the dataset, and chi-square tests of independence were used to examine associations between walkability categories and outdoor falls prevention strategy use. Results: Some strategies, such as visual scanning and holding rails on stairs, were used by 70% or more of participants while others, such as route planning, were infrequently or inconsistently used. With the exception of avoiding cell phone use while walking outdoors, no significant associations were found between walkability categories and outdoor falls prevention strategy use. Conclusion: Study findings serve as a needs assessment for health education and behavioral training.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • aging and older adults
  • community health promotion
  • health education
  • neighborhood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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