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Independent living with mobility restrictions: older people's perceptions of their out-of-home mobility

By Henna Luoma-Halkola, Liisa Häikiö

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Category Journal Articles
Abstract

We studied older people's perceptions of how they organise their out-of-home mobility and independent living when they face mobility restrictions, based on seven focus groups with older people (N = 28) from a suburb in Finland. This article provides an everyday life view of how the ability to move outside the home evolves through interdependencies between older people and their neighbourhoods, social relations and societal arrangements. Our findings show that supportive socio-material surroundings can provide older people with new ways to move outside their home despite mobility restrictions and new ways to organise their daily life with decreased mobility. In contrast, restrictive socio-material surroundings can lead to situations in which older people forgo certain out-of-home journeys and activities. The findings contribute to an understanding that organising one's daily life and out-of-home mobility is an act of interdependence. Policies promoting independent living in old age should recognise these fundamental interdependencies and support versatile ways of living rather than overemphasise activity and self-reliance. Based on older people's everyday life perspectives, both sides of the coin need to be considered: how to enable the out-of-home mobility of older people facing mobility restrictions and how to support them in managing and enjoying daily life with decreased mobility.

Date 2022
Publication Title Ageing and Society
Volume 42
Issue 2
Pages 249-270
ISBN/ISSN 0144686X
Publisher Cambridge University Press
DOI 10.1017/S0144686X20000823
Language English
Author Address Faculty of Social Sciences, Tampere University, Tampere, Finland ; Faculty of Social Sciences, Tampere University, Tampere, Finland
Additional Language English
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Tags
  1. activity of daily living
  2. Age
  3. Aging
  4. Daily LIfe
  5. Focus Groups
  6. Gerontology
  7. Independence
  8. Mobility
  9. neighborhoods
  10. Older adults
  11. open access
  12. perceptions
  13. Relationships
  14. restrictions
  15. Social Networks
  16. transportation
Badges
  1. open access