Die rol van rekreasievoorsiening en waargenome welstand van die lede betrokke by die Potchefstroom Dienssentrum vir Bejaardes
Stumbo and Peterson (2004:9) argue that the participation in meaningful leisure activities may lead to the improvement of elderly people’s health, well-being and quality of life. Changes which are associated with old age, such as the increase in adverse health conditions; however has a significant impact on leisure participation of the elderly (Austin et al., 2006:49). For the purpose of this study, the following questions need to be answered: a) Are physical, social, spiritual and cognitive leisure activities part of the leisure profile of persons sixty years and older? b) Do structural, interpersonal and intrapersonal constraints play a role in limiting the leisure participation of persons sixty years and older? c) Does a relationship exist between participation in physical, social, spiritual and cognitive leisure activities and perceived well-being of people sixty years and older? d) Can a leisure activity paradigm be compiled to indicate the leisure participation of persons sixty years and older? To answer these questions, this study focused on using a phenomenological research design to enquire about the meaning of the leisure phenomenon in elderly people’s lives (Fouché, 2005:270). This study was developed in accordance with the mixed methodological approach referred to by De Vos (2005b:361) as a combination of quantitative and qualitative research used in a single study. For the purpose of this study, one hundred and ten elderly people (men and women), sixty years and older and members of the Potchefstroom Service Centre for the Aged, participated. An availability sample was used to identify the participants who completed the questionnaire and participated in the focus group interview. Seventy two participants (60 females and 12 males) completed the questionnaire, whereby eight participants (5 females and 3 males) participated in the focus group interview. According to the results, respondents 60-64 years old indicated that they participate more in social, creative and cultural, and general leisure activities. Although 60% of these respondents (60-64 years) experience low levels of health, 80% still participate in physical leisure activities. The results suggested that these respondents (60-64 years) also participate less in travelling and outdoor leisure activities than respondents 65-74 years old and 75 years and older. Regarding respondents 65-74 years old, the results indicated higher levels of participation in social leisure activities, followed by general leisure activities. These respondents (65-74 years) participate more in travelling and outdoor leisure activities than the other age groups (60-64; 75 and older). Compared to the respondents 60-64 years, the leisure participation in creative and cultural and physical activities of respondents 65-74 years is significantly lower, even if the results showed they have a healthier health profile than respondents 60-64 years. The results showed that respondents 75 years and older participate more in general leisure activities, followed by social leisure activities and creative and cultural leisure activities. In comparison with respondents 60-64 years, respondents 75 years and older participate more in travelling and outdoor leisure activities. Although respondents 75 years and older, according to the results, have a healthier health profile than respondents 60-64 years and 65-74 years, participation in physical leisure activities was still very low. Regarding the relation between the leisure profile and the different types of living arrangements, it showed that respondents living in retirement villages participate more in social, general and physical leisure activities whereas respondents living in their own homes, participate more in general, social and creative and cultural leisure activities. However, respondents living with their children or family, or in a communal home, participate more in social leisure activities. In terms of the importance of leisure participation in elderly people’s life, the results indicated that 60% respondents 60-64 years, acknowledge leisure participation as very important in their lives, whereas 6% respondents 65-74 years and 75 years and older (21%), indicated leisure participation as not important. According to the respondents’ health profile, in relation to living arrangements and gender, women respondents living in retirement villages experience lower health levels than those living with their children or family, or in communal homes as well as male respondents. The results indicated that most of the respondents who experience average to low health levels, participate in social leisure activities whereas those who participate in outdoor leisure activities experience average health levels. In terms of happiness, well-being and quality of life, the male respondents living in retirement villages experience higher levels of happiness, well-being and quality of life compared to those living with children or family, or in communal homes. Women respondents living in their own homes or with their children or family, or in communal homes experience the highest levels of happiness, well-being and quality of life. This study also suggests that elderly people’s leisure participation can be programmed and planned by using a leisure activity pyramid. This leisure activity pyramid place social activities at the foundation of the leisure program, from where general, creative and cultural, physical, outdoor and travelling leisure activities can develop. The results showed, elderly people have a need to experience leisure benefits; hence the leisure benefits respondents 65-74 years old experience, includes interaction with others, whereas respondents 75 years and older indicated that they experience personal growth as a leisure benefit. Respondents (male and female) 65-74 years old indicated that meeting other people was the biggest leisure benefit, whereas respondents 60-64 years indicated that they participate in leisure activities to experience physical challenges while respondents 75 years and older participate in leisure activities to experience relaxation. In terms of the constraints which can limit participants’ leisure participation or exclude them from it, the respondents experience financial shortages as the most important constraint. The results showed that constraints are experienced differently between gender and age groups. Hence, the male respondents 65-74 years old and female respondents 75 years and older, indicated a shortage of time as the most important constraint, while male respondents 75 years and older, as well as female respondents between 60 and 74 years, indicated financial shortages as the most important constraint. According to the results, it seemed that respondents 85 years and older experience time and security, economic and structural, personal and programming as constraints. Respondents living in a flat on the same premises as children or family, experience time and security as constraints in contrast to those living with children or family, who experience economic and personal constraints. According to this study it is clear that old age and the provision of leisure services to older people, is a very complex issue. In the light of this information it is necessary for tertiary institutions to provide specialized training for recreation students, in the field of providing leisure services to older people, to meet the complex leisure needs of the elderly.
- Humanities