Program in homebased activities for people with dementia: Benefits and constraints

Robert Neumayer, Suzy Gattuso, Celia Saw, Herbert Jelinek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recreational programs have been identified as particularly important in maintaining quality of life in frail and dependent older people (Jones, Sloane, & Alexander, 1992) and of benefit to people with dementia (Hamilton-Smith, Hooker, & Jones, 1992). Such programs also have benefits for the non-pharmacological management of negative behaviours associated with dementia (Taft & Cronin-Stubbs, 1995). The need for a targeted, individualised leisure activity program for people with cognitive losses has also been stressed (Garratt & Hamilton-Smith, 1995). Data on leisure participation by older people shows that their leisure activities tend to focus on home and social relationships (Lynch & Veal, 1996). There is also a reduced engagement in “active” leisure such as sports and exercise programs and a general reduction in leisure participation with increasing age (Kelly, 1987; Ross & Hayes, 1988). Until recently, the meaning of leisure for older adults has been poorly researched, and there is some evidence that their view of leisure has not been well understood by leisure practitioners and researchers (Dimelow & Howie, 1994; Earle & von Mering, 1996; Wearing, 1996). Typical activities of older adults (travel, knitting, odd jobs, and gardening), which are generally not counted among the active leisure pursuits most valued in the leisure industry, have been identified as protective factors in preventing onset of dementia (Fabrigoule, Letenneur, Dartigues, Zarrouk, Commenges, & Barberger-Gateau, 1995).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-39
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Leisurability
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998


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