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Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2014 Sep-Oct;59(2):195-203. doi: 10.1016/j.archger.2014.06.006. Epub 2014 Jul 1.

What are the factors associated with physical activity (PA) participation in community dwelling adults with dementia? A systematic review of PA correlates.

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School of Health and Social Care, University of Greenwich, Southwood Site Avery Hill Road Eltham, London SE9 2UG, UK. Electronic address:
Department of Clinical Neuropsychology, VU University Amsterdam, Van der Boechorststraat 1, 1081 BT Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Department of Physiotherapy, University of Birmingham, 52 Pritchatts Road, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK.
University Psychiatric Centre, KU Leuven, Kortenberg, Department of Neurosciences, Leuvensesteenweg 517, B-3070 Kortenberg, Belgium; Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, KU Leuven, Tervuursevest 101, B-3001 Leuven, Belgium.
Old Age Psychiatry, University Hospitals Leuven, & Department of Neurosciences, KU Leuven, Herestraat 49, B-3000, Belgium.


PA shows promise as a modifiable lifestyle intervention to benefit pathological symptoms of dementia. However, little is known about the factors associated with participation in PA in community dwelling adults with dementia. A systematic review was undertaken to identify PA correlates. Two independent reviewers searched major electronic databases and extracted data on studies reporting quantitative correlates of PA participation in community dwelling adults with dementia. PA correlates were analyzed using the summary code approach within the socio-ecological model. Out of a potential of 118 articles, 12 met the eligibility criteria encompassing 752 participants. We conducted secondary analysis on nine data sets. Increased energy intake, resting metabolic rate, fat free mass, gait speed, global motor function, overall health related quality of life (HRQOL), physical HRQOL, higher levels of social functioning and reduced apathy were positively associated with PA. Taking ≥ four medications, dizziness, lower activities of daily living (ADL) function, a history of falls, less waking hours in the day, more autonomic problems and delirium were negatively associated with PA. Increasing age and lower global cognition were not consistently associated with PA participation. It is surprising that increasing age and lower global cognition do not appear to influence PA participation. All significant correlates should be confirmed in prospective studies with particular focus on the relationship of PA and gait speed, ADL function, falls history and dietary intake and the progression of frailty and nursing home admission as a priority.


Alzheimer's disease (AD); Dementia; Exercise; PA

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