University of Bath

Take part in our study to improve health and wellbeing in later life

If you're over 65, our researchers want to hear from you for a new study to understand more about how older people can stay fitter for longer.

Participants in a REACT session - our healthy ageing study which is now recruiting for new participants based locally.
Participants in a REACT session - our healthy ageing study which is now recruiting for new participants based locally. Image courtesy of Alex Rotas (alexrotasphotography.co.uk)

What we're doing

We know an older person who remains fit and active is more likely to retain good physical functioning, prevent disease and disability and enjoy independence, mental wellbeing and a higher quality of life.

Through the pioneering REACT (REtirement in ACTion) study, our researchers are enabling older people to maintain levels of physical activity that will help deliver these benefits.

The next REACT sessions will be starting at the Bath Leisure Centre on North Parade Road in July 2017. To take part you should register by Friday 30 June.

Take part

To be eligible to take part in this study you must be:

  • 65 years old, or older
  • finding that walking, climbing stairs or getting up from a chair are starting to get more difficult

What's involved

If you take part in this study, you will be randomly allocated in to one of two groups:

  • in group 1 you will be asked to attend regular physical activity and social sessions with a small group of other older people, at a local community centre
  • in group 2 you will receive an information pack on healthy ageing and will be invited to three social and health education sessions at a local community centre

Whichever of these two groups you are in, a researcher will also ask you to:

  • provide some information about yourself (the researcher will go through a questionnaire with you)
  • take part in some simple physical function tests
  • ask you to wear an activity monitor around your wrist for a week

What you'll get

The REACT programme is designed to increase your strength and stamina and help maintain the physical function you need to continue living independently and well.

It is also an opportunity to socialise with other people and our aim is to make it lots of fun. Older adults often find being involved in research a positive, interesting and stimulating experience.

You will also be contributing to a large pioneering study that will provide very important information for the NHS and, if successful, may improve the health of many other older adults in the future.

To take part, email the REACT team REACT@bath.ac.uk

More about this study

Dr Afroditi Stathi, who is leading the research, said: “We know that being more physically active is very beneficial for older adults, and whatever your age it is never too late to start. The REACT study is based on the successful LIFE intervention from the United States. It is testing whether the REACT approach is useful and good value for money as a means of increasing physical activity in older adults, and delivering the associated health benefits.”

“Ultimately, almost 800 people will take part in the study in Bath, Bristol, Exeter and Birmingham. We hope that this research will inform UK health policy so that older people can be supported to live life to the full for as long as possible”.