Extraversion personality, perceived health and activity participation among community-dwelling aging adults in Hong Kong

Daniel W. L. Lai, Nan Qin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Activity participation is essential to the wellbeing of aging adults. Divergent levels of activity participation within aging populations have been explained from diverse perspectives, but the interaction effects of key determinants, such as personality and health, are often ignored. This study examines the effects of extravert personality on aging adults’ activity levels by addressing its interaction with perceived physical health and mental health. A sample of 304 adults aged 50 and older was selected using systematic sampling from participants of an institute for promoting active aging at a university in Hong Kong in 2017. Data on socio-demographic characteristics, perceived physical and mental health, extraversion personality traits, and level of activity participation were collected using a telephone survey. Most participants (46.7%) reported moderate activity levels and over a quarter (26.6%) reported high or low activity levels. Multi-nominal logistic regression analyses show that extraversion was associated with an increased likelihood of reporting moderate (OR = 1.85, p = .036) but not high (p > .05) activity levels when adjusted for perceived physical and mental health and socio-demographics, with low activity levels being the constant comparison. Meanwhile, extraversion predicted both moderate (OR = 3.84, p = .014) and high (OR = 5.06, p = .032) activity levels for participants with poor or average perceived mental health. However, the interaction effects of extraversion with perceived physical health or mental health were not significant in predicting either moderate or high activity levels (p > .05). The implications for enhancing activity participation among aging adults are discussed in view of both personality and perceived health status.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0209154
Number of pages13
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 2018

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

User-Defined Keywords

  • activity participation
  • older adults
  • Hong kong
  • extraversion
  • personality
  • perceived health


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