Comparisons of leisure-Time physical activity participation by adults with and without a disability: Results of an Australian cross-sectional national survey
journal contributionposted on 10.03.2021, 00:23 by L Hassett, Nora Shields, J Cole, K Owen, C Sherrington
© Objectives The objective of this study was to describe and compare the amount and type of leisure-Time physical activity, and motivations and barriers to participation among adults with and without a disability. Methods Analysis of deidentified data from an Australian cross-sectional national telephone-based survey (October 2015 to June 2018) of sport and physical recreation participation over the previous 12 months, and barriers and motivations to participation. Descriptive statistics (incorporating weighted proportions), χ 2 tests and regression analyses were conducted to describe aspects of participation and compare those with and without self-reported disability. Results Of the 54 343 adults surveyed, 15% reported a disability. Adults with a disability were half as likely to meet physical activity guidelines through sport and/or physical recreation than adults without a disability (OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.51 to 0.57). A greater proportion of adults with a disability participated in physical recreation only (40% vs 31%; χ 2 =187; p<0.001), whereas a greater proportion of adults without a disability participated in sport only (20% vs 12%; χ 2 =188; p<0.001). Adults with a disability were more motivated than adults without a disability to try a new activity for physical health or fitness benefits (55% vs 46%; χ 2 =36; p<0.001). The most reported barrier to participation for adults with a disability not currently participating in sport and/or physical recreation was poor health or injury (62%), whereas for adults without a disability it was lack of time/too many other commitments (43%). Conclusion Adults with a disability are less physically active and report different physical activity profiles and barriers to being active than adults without a disability. Urgent action is required to address this discrepancy.