Texas State University and The Price Center in San Marcos have partnered for “Connect Across Generations,” an exercise study for seniors that will examine the health impact of yoga or Tai Chi participation.
Beginning in September, individuals 65 years or older will be recruited to attend either a Tai Chi or chair yoga class once a week during an 8-week period. At the end of the period, a focus group interview will be conducted to assess the effectiveness of the program.
"A high priority for health research is maintaining the health of our aging society to minimize healthcare costs and allow seniors to continue to be active and productive with a high quality of life," said Walter Horton, associate vice president for research and federal relations, and chief research officer.
Some program participants will be paired with a Texas State student participant between 18 and 25 years of age, who will attend the same exercise class as her or his “buddy.” Before and after the 8-week period, study participants will complete a paper-based survey questionnaire. Participants will be fully compensated for their once-a-week classes during the period, and upon completion of the two surveys and the focus group interview, each participant will also receive a $50 gift card.
The study will be overseen by Eun Hae Grace Kim, assistant professor in the School of Social Work, with Kyong Hee Chee, associate professor in the Department of Sociology, serving as co-investigator. Clay DeStefano, executive director of The Price Center, Anna Broome of SMTX Yoga and Brenda Bell of Tiger Lady Tai Chi will collaborate with the research team.
Research has shown that drop-out rates among participants in community-based exercise programs tend to be high among older adults, and this is generally attributable to a lack of social support for them. Kim and Chee have designed an intergenerational exercise buddy program embedded in existing Tai Chi and chair yoga classes at The Price Center. The Texas State researchers will evaluate various effects of the intergenerational program on participants, including their well-being.
To learn more or register for the study, contact Chee at (512) 245-4760 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on other Price Center activities, call (512) 392-2900 or visit price-center.org.