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Tai Chi and Health-Related Quality of Life in Nursing Home Residents

Authors

  • Linda Y. K. Lee RN, RM, RTN, PhD,

    1. Pi Iota, Assistant Professor, Nursing Team, School of Science & Technology, The Open University of Hong Kong
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  • Diana T. F. Lee RN, RM, RTN, PhD,

    1. Pi Iota, Director and Professor of Nursing, Nethersole School of Nursing and Assistant Dean, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
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  • Jean Woo MA, FRKAM (Medicine), FRACP FRCPE (Edin.), FRCP (Lond.), MB BChir (Cantab.), MD (Cantab.)

    1. Chairperson and Professor, Department of Community and Family Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong; all in Hong Kong ROC
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Correspondence
Dr. Linda Y. K. Lee, Nursing Team, School of Science & Technology, The Open University of Hong Kong, 30 Good Shepherd Street, Ho Man Tin, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China. E-mail: yklee@ouhk.edu.hk

Abstract

Purpose: Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) that is good is regarded as the goal of elderly residential care. However, limited evidence exists indicating a promising intervention that can achieve this goal. The aim of this study is to examine the effect of Tai Chi on HRQOL in nursing home residents.

Design: A nonequivalent pretest-posttest control-group design.

Methods: A convenience sample of 139 residents from six nursing homes in Hong Kong was used. The experimental group (n=66) joined a 26-week Tai Chi program, while the control group (n=73) continued with usual daily activities. The physical and mental components of HRQOL were designated as the dependent variables. Resident satisfaction was considered as a covariate. Doubly multivariate repeated measures analysis of covariance was done to examine the intervention effect.

Findings: After adjusting for the confounding effect of resident satisfaction, a statistically significant difference (p<0.05) in the physical and mental components of HRQOL between the experimental and control groups was found. Findings showed significant improvement in HRQOL after residents practiced Tai Chi.

Conclusions: These investigators contribute additional knowledge about the health benefits of Tai Chi among nursing home residents and indicates support for its use in this population to improve HRQOL.

Clinical Relevance: Tai Chi has unique characteristics as a health exercise that is particularly suitable for nursing home residents. The inclusion of Tai Chi exercise in elderly residential care practice is recommended.

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