A1 Journal article (refereed)
Leisure Adjustments of Older Finnish Adults during the Early Stages of the COVID-19 Pandemic (2022)

Koskinen, V. K., & Leinonen, E. A. (2022). Leisure Adjustments of Older Finnish Adults during the Early Stages of the COVID-19 Pandemic. International Journal of the Sociology of Leisure, 5(3), 373-391. https://doi.org/10.1007/s41978-022-00113-x

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Koskinen, Veera K.; Leinonen, Emilia A.

Journal or series: International Journal of the Sociology of Leisure

ISSN: 2520-8683

eISSN: 2520-8691

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 06/07/2022

Volume: 5

Issue number: 3

Pages range: 373-391

Publisher: Springer

Publication country: Switzerland

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s41978-022-00113-x

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/82813


The current approach to “aging well” emphasizes the importance of active leisure participation in late adulthood. This relates to the view that leisure activities enable older adults to stay physically, mentally, and socially active, and they thereby contribute to wellbeing. In spring 2020, leisure activity engagement was significantly hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic. This study explores leisure-related experiences and adaptation strategies among Finnish older adults during the period of strict physical distancing. The data comprises letters (N = 77) written by Finnish people (aged 70–93) that were analyzed using content analysis. The study suggests that the reorganization of leisure was particularly influenced by the social significance of leisure activities, the age identities of the participants, and the prevailing ideals of active aging. The paper introduces three strategies of leisure adjustment: building new routines, maintaining activeness, and enjoying slow leisure. The article highlights the importance of investing in older adults’ leisure participation in the aftercare of the pandemic.

Keywords: older people; ageing; leisure; participation; well-being; unusual conditions; pandemics; COVID-19

Free keywords: late adulthood; leisure; physical distancing; active aging; COVID-19

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

Preliminary JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2023-10-01 at 15:17