Bodily movement and sustaining quality of life in old age research costs)

Main funder

Funds granted by main funder (€)

299 977,00

Funding program

Research costs of Academy Research Fellow, AoF (Academy of Finland)

Project timetable

Project start date: 01/09/2019

Project end date: 31/08/2022


Voluntary movement is an essential building block of practically all meaningful roles an older individual might hold. Therefore, I
postulate that physical activity and sedentary behaviour may be indicators of the ability of an older individual to maintain good quality
of life. The purposes of the present program of research are 1) to develop a method to capture bodily movement of older people in free-
living conditions, 2) to validate this method with respect to established assessments of quality of life, 3) to examine the patterns of
physical behaviour change in free-living conditions among older people followed up for four years, and 4) to assess whether the
patterns of physical behaviour change are reflected in changes of quality of life. These objectives are addressed by utilising pre-existing
data from a population representative sample of N = 500 75 to 85 year-old men and women to be followed-up at four years past the
baseline testing during this project with an expectation to be able to re-test N = 225 women and N = 150. Quality of life is assessed with
Older People’s Quality of Life questionnaire’ (OPQOL-brief), and physical activity and sedentary behaviour with 7-day actigraphy
using a trunk and a thigh worn accelerometer. The main novelty is in evaluating patterning of physical activity and sedentary behaviour
using accumulation and patterning metrics, and in utilising machine learning clustering techniques to evaluate the effects of physical
behaviour change on quality of life. The created knowledge regarding the relationship between physical activity, sedentary behaviour
and quality life is valuable in e.g. informing policy decisions regarding aging in place or moving to assisted living. Funding is requested
to establish my research group with funding for a postdoc, a PhD candidate and a part-time research assistant to be recruited for the
project. I have organised a visit to one of the leading experts in physical activity-related numerical analysis, and also an opportunity for
the PhD candidate to visit top-ranked sports science school during the funding period. My background is in biomechanics and lately I
have explored the use of wearable sensors in assessing physical behaviour. I am excited about the proposed program of research, it is a
logical extension of my work, it would support my strong upwards career trajectory, and I would be ideally suited to lead such a
program of research.

Principal Investigator

Other persons related to this project (JYU)

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Related publications

Last updated on 2019-04-10 at 10:08