Impact of Activity Tracker Usage in Combination with a Physical Activity Intervention on Physical and Cognitive Parameters in Healthy Adults Aged 60+: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Auerswald, Tina and Hendker, Anna and Ratz, Tiara and Lippke, Sonia and Pischke, Claudia R and Peters, Manuela and Meyer, Jochen and von Holdt, Kai and Voelcker-Rehage, Claudia
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Regular physical activity (PA) is of central importance for healthy aging and has a well-known impact on helping older adults maintain their cognitive and physical health. Thus, we aimed to compare the effectiveness of two physical activity interventions primarily conducted at home (print-based or web-based vs. web-based plus the use of an activity tracker) on cognitive and physical health parameters in older adults. Data of participants (n = 551, 60–80 years) were analyzed after being randomly allocated to a waitlist control group (CG), a web-based or print-based intervention group (IG) or a web-based intervention group that also included the use of an activity tracker (AG). Measured parameters were grip strength, endurance (two-minute step test), gait speed (four-meter walk test), cognition (Simon task; balanced integration score (BIS), reaction time and accuracy) and physical self-concept (Physical Self-Description Questionnaire (PSDQ)). We found the highest effect sizes in all measured dimensions for AG (grip strength, endurance, gait speed, reaction time, physical self-concept), followed by IG (endurance, gait speed, reaction time, physical self-concept) and CG (endurance, gait speed, BIS). Findings suggest that a combined web-based and activity tracker intervention may improve physical functions, physical self-concept, and cognition in community-dwelling older adults.
Physical activity and health equity: primary prevention for healthy ageing