UCAM to lead an European project to promote healthy ageing

A group of researchers from six universities will study 2.500 people between the ages 50 and 80 during two years, focusing on observing and spreading habits of healthy lifestyle with the object of preventing sarcopenia, osteoporosis, diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol and certain types of cancer

11 March 2019

Doctor Pablo Jorge Marcos-Pardo, professor from the degree in Physical Activity and Sport Sciences from UCAM, head researcher and coordinator of the project, performing an activity with one of the participants in the research

 

“Promoting the shift sedentary Lifestyle towards active Ageing” - ‘LifeAge’ is a Project Erasmus+ Sport in which the participants are educators in physical activity, nutritionists, doctors and professionals of audiovisual communications. They come from different universities in Europe: the Catholic Universities of Murcia and Cádiz (Spain), Foro Itálico (Italy), Lapin yliopisto (Finland), Latvia (Letonia) and Limerick (Ireland).

“We will conduct a physical and psychosocial evaluation to 2.500 people from different parts of Europe to determine the health status of this population and to be able to prevent or to avoid through an educational physical activity intervention the appearance of diseases caused by sedentary lifestyle”, affirms doctor Pablo Jorge Marcos-Pardo, professor from Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Activities and Sport Sciences, head researcher and coordinator of this project.

The research team will perform an examination to the selected population. The examination includes tests of physical condition (strength, resistance, flexibility), balance, corporal composition, functional evaluation and surveys on factors like nutrition, sociodemographic data, motivation, psychological aspects and quality of life, between others.

After the examination, different formational actions will take place as a guide to exercise and motivate, directed to adults and the elderly, a comic directed to minors to teach them how to age in a healthy way, a promotional video of active ageing, as well as different formative seminaries, scientific articles searchable in JCR or the final event of the project. The final event will take place at UCAM between 10th and 11th of December, 2020. Many professionals from various countries are expected to attend the event.

Only the 20% of the people over 65 exercise, and many of them don’t do it often enough, or with enough intensity, and it isn’t sufficient to be a benefit for their health

In the recent years, a survey done in Spain about the sport habits of the population shows that only 20% of over 65 year olds in Spain exercise regularly, and only 10% in the case of over 75 year olds. Furthermore, a large amount doesn’t have the habit of doing it with enough frequency or intensity as to produce physical, psychological or social effects. Consequently, there are no health benefits from exercise that is not done on a regular base with certain level of intensity.

For this reason this project, directed by doctoral researchers in Physical Activity and Sport Sciences, places value on the need to guide the participants in exercise by physical educators, professionals in sports with formation. These professionals are qualified to evaluate the condition and to design an exercise program adapted to individual needs. Accordingly, the general goal of the project, financed with 389.830,00€ from the Erasmus+ Sport program, is to evaluate the consequences of sedentary lifestyle in the health of the ageing population of Europe, and to develop actions to promote and to educate in physical activity, exercise and other healthy habits in different countries in people aged over 50.

UCAM researchers involved in the program:

Dr. Pablo Jorge Marcos-Pardo (Main Researcher), Dr. Noelia González Gálvez, Dr. Gemma María Gea García, Dr. Raquel Vaquero Cristóbal, Dr. Francisco Javier Orquín Castrillón, Dr. Luis Manuel Martínez Aranda, Dr. Abraham López Vivancos, Dr. Alejandro Espeso García, from the group of investigation in health, physical activity, fitness and motor behaviour (GISAFFCOM), together with the collaboration from the department of Audiovisual Communications for the completion of the final document.