Understanding impediments and enablers to physical activity among African American adults: A systematic review of qualitative studies

University of Texas, Health Science Center at Houston, School of Public Health, Dallas Regional Campus, Dallas, TX, USA.
Health Education Research (Impact Factor: 1.66). 08/2011; 26(6):1010-24. DOI: 10.1093/her/cyr068
Source: PubMed


Physical inactivity is a leading cause of premature death, disability and numerous chronic diseases. Minority and underserved populations in the United States and worldwide have a higher prevalence of physical inactivity affecting their morbidity and mortality rates. In the United States, African Americans are less physically active and have a higher proportion of many chronic diseases in comparison to Caucasians. This disparity needs to be well understood in order to design and implement effective interventions aimed at increasing physical activity levels among African Americans. In the present study, we conduct a systematic review (through 2010) of the qualitative literature pertaining to impediments and enablers to physical activity participation among African Americans. This review focuses on qualitative research due to its advantages in understanding attitudes and perceptions related to health behavior within the context of participants' natural environment. Findings are stratified by gender and age, to explore unique impediments and enablers based on age and sex and results are discussed within the socio-ecological model to account for the multi-level nature of factors affecting physical activity. Findings should be taken into account by researchers, program planners and policymakers when tailoring physical activity interventions to African American communities in the United States.

24 Reads
  • Source
    • "Additionally, multiple enablers to physical activity were cited, such as a desire to be healthy, social support from family or friends, and environmental elements such as nearby recreational and exercise facilities. As in our study, Siddiqi et al in a systematic review found that lack of time and self-efficacy and unsafe neighborhoods were commonly cited barriers to activity among African American adults (22). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Insufficient physical activity is an established risk factor for numerous chronic diseases and for premature death. Accumulating evidence reveals that prolonged sedentary time is detrimental, independent of the protective effects of physical activity. Although studies have explored correlates of physical activity among ethnic minority populations, few have examined factors related to sedentary behavior. Therefore, we conducted a preliminary investigation into urban adults' perceptions of sedentary behavior alongside perceived barriers and enablers to physical activity. In-depth semi-structured interviews were used to evaluate perceptions of physical activity and sedentary behavior in a sample of low-income, ethnic minority adults. The framework approach guided researchers in analyzing the qualitative data. Participants were well aware of the positive health benefits of physical activity. However, most admitted not regularly engaging in physical activity and cited numerous barriers to activity, such as lack of time, insufficient finances, and neighborhood crime. Enablers included weight loss, the presence of social support, and the availability of safe parks conducive to exercise. In comparison, participants were primarily unfamiliar with the term "sedentary behavior" and did not perceive a relationship between sedentary behavior and health outcomes. Our findings illustrate the need to increase the awareness of negative health implications of prolonged sedentary time while continuing to address the multiple impediments to physical activity as a way to combat chronic disease.
    Preventing chronic disease 10/2013; 10:E177. DOI:10.5888/pcd10.130125 · 2.12 Impact Factor

  • Gaceta Sanitaria 11/2012; · 1.19 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective This cross-sectional study examined racial/ethnic differences in meeting the 2008 United States Department of Health and Human Services Physical Activity Guidelines aerobic component (≥150 moderate-to-vigorous minutes/week in bouts of ≥10 minutes) among persons with or at risk of radiographic knee osteoarthritis (RKOA). Methods We evaluated African American versus white differences in guideline attainment using multiple logistic regression, adjusting for sociodemographic (age, sex, site, income, and education) and health factors (comorbidity, depressive symptoms, overweight/obesity, and knee pain). Our analyses included adults ages 49–84 years who participated in accelerometer monitoring at the Osteoarthritis Initiative 48-month visit (n = 1,142 with RKOA and n = 747 at risk of RKOA). ResultsTwo percent of African Americans and 13.0% of whites met the guidelines. For adults with and at risk of RKOA, significantly lower rates of guidelines attainment among African Americans compared to whites were partially attenuated by health factor differences, particularly overweight/obesity and knee pain (with RKOA: adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0.24, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 0.08–0.72; at risk of RKOA: OR 0.28, 95% CI 0.07–1.05). Conclusion Despite known benefits from physical activity, attainment of the physical activity guidelines among persons with and at risk of RKOA was low. African Americans were 72–76% less likely than whites to meet the guidelines. Culturally relevant interventions and environmental strategies in the African American community targeting overweight/obesity and knee pain may reduce future racial/ethnic differences in physical activity and improve health outcomes.
    02/2013; 65(2). DOI:10.1002/acr.21803
Show more


24 Reads