Given the widespread provision of grandparental child care, examining its impact on grandparents’ energy-expenditure related behaviors in the broader context of health is imperative.
The maintenance of functional independence and good quality of life is critical at a more advanced age. It has been put forward that an increased duration, frequency and intensity of physical activity combined with a restriction of sedentary behavior is the most important strategy to reduce morbidity risk and to foster health in an aging population.
Using a mixed methods approach, the present project aims to fill a gap in current knowledge on (changes in) caregiving grandparents’ PA levels and SB patterns.
For the quantitative research component of the project, an observational follow-up study will be conducted to examine and compare both energy-expenditure related behaviors linked to body composition and health-related quality of life among caregiving grandparents, non-caregiving grandparents and non-grandparent peers, both momentarily and over time.
A qualitative study using focus group discussions will be conducted in order to understand the underlying factors and mechanisms influencing grandparents’ physical activity and sedentary behavior as a result of providing non-residential care for their grandchild(ren). Additionally, the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic, during which intergenerational contact had to be avoided for a while, on the levels of physical activity and sedentary behavior in grandparents will be questioned.
Vermote M., Deliens T., Deforche B., D’Hondt E. (2021) The impact of non-residential grandchild care on physical activity and sedentary behavior in people aged 50 years and over: study protocol of the Healthy Grandparenting Project. BMC Public Health 21, 38 (2021).