Subjective age and planning strategies for physical activity: Brief report about a domain-specific example from a cross-sectional observation study

Julian Wienert *, Tim Kuhlmann **, Sebastian Fink ***, Rainer Hambrecht *** and Sonia Lippke ****/*****

(*) Institute of Social Medicine and Epidemiology, University of Lübeck, Lübeck, Germany
(**) Department of Psychology, University of Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany
(***) Bremer Institut für Herz-und Kreislaufforschung, Klinikum Links der Weser, Bremen, Germany
(****) Jacobs Center on Lifelong Learning and Institutional Development, Jacobs University Bremen, Bremen, Germany
(*****) Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS), Bremen, Germany

We investigated the relationship between subjective physical age and planning strategies for physical activity which can help to translate behavioral intentions for physical activity into behavior. Cross-sectional data from a mostly healthy population (N = 437) with a broad age range were analyzed (26 - 86 years, Mage = 48.24, SDage = 12.07). The model displays that subjective physical age is interrelated with action planning and chronological age is interrelated with coping planning. In addition, subjective physical age also has an indirect effect on coping planning. Findings suggest differential cognitions for both planning strategies which can help to further advance research and intervention development in multidisciplinary physical activity research. They also highlight the potential importance of subjective physical age for planning strategies to engage in physical activity.

Keywords: Health action process approach; Subjective physical age; Action planning; Coping planning; Mediation