Since 1980, More Exercise for Seniors (MBvO in Dutch) has provided a number of special physical activities for the elderly. The aim is to improve social participation and integration, and to prevent a need for care. Despite the fact that MBvO has been active for more than 25 years, and weekly 300,000 people participate in gymnastics, swimming, dancing, etc, no effect on fitness and health has been proven to date. The study was carried out in two regions: Drenthe and Zuid-Holland. Using the GALM (Groningen Active Living Model) method, 4600 independently living people aged 65 years and older were asked to participate in a motor fitness test. Of the 721 people who participated, 386 (the least fit) were invited to take part in the study. They were than randomly divided into an experimental and a control group. The experimental group did gymnastics once or twice a week. The control group received a health educational program. Assessments were carried out at pretest and posttest (10 weeks). In the groups offered MBvO gymnastics once a week, no effects were found on subjective health, physical performance or quality of life and only minor effects on physical fitness. In the groups offered MBvO gymnastics twice a week, some beneficial quality of life effects were found in the least physically active people at baseline. It is recommended that the frequency and intensity of the regular MBvO gymnastics should be increased, to emphasize the importance of health education, and that relatively inactive and older individuals (70+) should be recruited.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Tijdschrift voor Gerontologie en Geriatrie|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Oct 2006|