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Counseling for physical activity as a means for promoting the level of mobility in older people (SCAMOB)

Counseling for physical activity as a means for promoting the level of mobility in older people (SCAMOB)

Screening and Counseling for Physical Activity and Mobility in Older People (SCAMOB)

The aim of this 2-year intervention study is to evaluate the impact of an exercise counseling program, organized within the primary care, on physical activity and prevention of mobility limitation in older people at an increased risk of disability. The target population of the study is all the 75-81-year-old community-living residents in the City of Jyväskylä, living in the area of city centre. Inclusion criteria were: a) the ability to walk outdoors at least 0.5 km without assistance, b) at highest moderate level of physical activity at the moment, c) no severe memory impairments, d) no medical contraindications for physical activity, and e) consent to participate. Screening of the study group and baseline measurements were executed in 2003. The final study group (n=632) was randomized into intervention and control groups. The intervention group participated in motivational exercise counseling in which personal exercise plan was designed together with a physiotherapist. Compliance and behavior change were supported through phone contacts every three months over two years by the physiotherapist. In addition, the surveillance of changes in health and mobility was carried out through three biannual telephone interviews in both the intervention and control group. The follow-up interviews and study center examinations were arranged two years after the baseline. Institutionalization and mortality are followed up.


Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, Ministry of Education, University of Jyväskylä, Juho Vainio Foundation

Research group

Principal investigator

Prof. Taina Rantanen; taina.rantanen[at], Department of Health Sciences, University of Jyväskylä

Doctoral thesis

Selected publications

Mänty M, Heinonen A, Leinonen R, Törmäkangas T, Hirvensalo M, Kallinen M, Sakari-Rantanen R, von Bonsdorff M, Heikkinen E, Rantanen T. Long-Term Effect of Physical Activity Counseling on the Development of Mobility Limitation Among Older People: A Randomized Controlled Study. J Gerontol Med Sci 2009;64:83-9.

Pakkala I,  Read S, Leinonen R,  Hirvensalo M, Lintunen T, Rantanen T. The effects of physical activity counseling on mood among 75-81-year old people: A randomized controlled trial. Preventive Medicine 2008 46(5):412-8

von Bonsdorff MB, Leinonen R, Kujala UM, Heikkinen E, Törmäkangas T, Hirvensalo M, Rasinaho M, Karhula S, Mänty M, Rantanen T. Effect of Physical Activity Counseling on Disability among Older People: A 2-year RCT. J Am Geriatr Soc, 2008;56:2188-94


Department of Sport Sciences (Professors Mirja Hirvensalo, Taru Lintunen)

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