2011 Volume 48 Issue 4 Pages 352-360
Aim: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of a comprehensive intervention program named SPRING, which utilizes a hot spring facility, in community-dwelling older adults in a randomized controlled trial.
Methods: A total of 60 community-dwelling elderly people (mean age, 72.7±6.0 years) participated in this program. After baseline investigation, participants were randomly assigned to an intervention group (n=31) or a control group (n=29). The intervention group participated in a comprehensive intervention program (including exercise classes, nutrition classes and bathing) twice a week for 3 months. After 3 months and 6 months, we evaluated the effects of the intervention.
Results: The attendance rate of the intervention group was 76%, and there were no accidents or injuries associated with this program. After 3 months, grip strength and one-leg standing with eyes-open scores significantly improved among the intervention group, compared with the control group (p=0.028; p=0.003, respectively). On follow-up, grip strength, one-leg standing with eyes-open scores and the World Health Organization Well-Being Index (WHO-5) scores were statistically significantly maintained or had improved in the intervention group (p=0.001; p=0.024; p=0.027, respectively).
Conclusion: The comprehensive intervention program SPRING may improve physical function among community-dwelling older adults. In addition, SPRING may have long-term beneficial effects for older adults.