Effects of the Motion Wellness System on balance, coordination, strength and quality of life in older adults: a survey study


PURPOSE: The purpose of this study is to investigate the benefits of the Motion Wellness Platinum Systems equipment, the patterns of usage of the equipment, and the related factors facilitating and impeding usage of the equipment. METHODS: The study will take place over a one year period, November 1, 2016-October 31, 2017. Data will be collected from users aged 55 and older at all 3 Motion Wellness System sites in Fort Worth and Arlington. Surveys will be collected for a duration of 6 months with an average data collection of 2 hours per site visit. Number of users during the data collection visits at each site and total number of users of the equipment over the period of data collection will be recorded, regardless of whether people agree to complete the survey or not. RESULTS: During the data collection period, in 36.5 hours of data collection, only 5 users matched the targeted age group and agreed to complete a survey. Fifty-one people used the equipment, mostly consisting of children who were accompanied by adults less than the age of 55. Through the survey, factors that facilitated usage included newspaper/magazine advertisements informing the community about the installation of the Motion Wellness System. Factors that impeded usage included the presence of too many children using the equipment and participants’ lack of transportation. CONCLUSION: The awareness or cultural acceptance of adult playgrounds is not as strong in the western civilization as it is in Asian countries. Lack of advertisement about the Motion Wellness System and the benefits of exercise within the area possibly resulted in the less-than-expected turnout. Location is another limitation to this study. The initial proposal stated to construct equipment near senior centers where older adults can freely use the system and perhaps even participate in group exercises using the system. Even if older adults wanted to “play” on the playground, they were likely to shy away in presence of the children, the majority of users. In addition, during the first month of data collection, the frequent rain and occasional high temperatures discouraged outdoor activities. Overall, the benefits of the Motion Wellness System, the patterns of usage, and the factors facilitating and impeding usage are inconclusive due to the small sample size in this study.

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