DOI: 10.1093/geroni/igad104.2305 ISSN: 2399-5300


Hugo Westerlund, Andreas Fröberg, Lawrence Sacco, Kristin Suorsa, Tuija Leskinen, Pasan Hettiarachchi, Magnus Svartengren, Sari Stenholm
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies
  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Health (social science)


The aim was to investigate concurrent changes in accelerometer-measured total physical activity (TPA), moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and sedentary time, and changes in self-rated health across the retirement transition. Data from two longitudinal studies was pooled: the Swedish Retirement Study (SRS) and the Finnish Retirement and Aging (FIREA) study that used similar methods. Data from three waves (each approximately 12 months apart) was included: one pre-retirement (wave 1, W-1) and two post-retirement follow-ups (W-2 and W-3). In total, 245 participants (27% men, mean age 64 years at W-1) were included. Thigh-worn accelerometers were used to collect data for TPA, MVPA and sedentary time at W-1 and W-2 and processed through ActiPASS and harmonized for time spent in different physical activity intensities. To be included in the analyses, a minimum of 4 days with at least 10 hours of accelerometer wear time during waking hours at both W-1 and W-2 was required. Questionnaires were used to collect data for self-rated health at W-1, W-2, and W-3. Ordinal regression models showed that 10 more minutes of MVPA at W-1 was significantly associated with higher odds of reporting better self-rated health at W-1 (OR: 1.12 [1.02-1.22]) in non-manual workers only. The association between MVPA and self-rated health was non-significant in the fully adjusted models. No significant associations were observed between changes in TPA, MVPA or sedentary time during retirement transition, and self-rated health at post-retirement follow-ups. In conclusion, this study showed a significant cross-sectional association between MVPA and better self-rated health before retirement.

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