The purpose of this study was to investigate the leisure participation, leisure motivation, and life satisfaction for elders over 65 years of age who lived in public senior resident homes in Taipei and Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Demographic data such as locations, institutions, financial arrangement, gender, age, educational level, marital status, and health condition were investigated as well.
The survey instruments included the Leisure Participation Involvement (LPI), Leisure Motivation Scale (LMS), Life Satisfaction Index (LSI-Z), and demographic survey. The LPI was utilized to measure the frequency of participation in 6 different leisure activities: outdoor activities, sports, indoor activities and hobbies, cultural activities and entertainment, social and family activities, and service and volunteer activities. The LMS was used to measure 4 different motivations in leisure: intellectual motivation, social motivation, competence mastery, and stimulus avoidance. The LSI-Z measured the elders' level of satisfaction in life. Finally, a demographic survey provided personal and institutional information.
The data collection was conducted at 3 public senior resident homes in Taipei and Kaohsiung. A total number of 416 surveys were collected and 411 were usable. The data was analyzed by using SPSS Statistical Package for the Social Science (SPSS version 13) computer program for Window XP.
The results indicated that leisure participation, leisure motivation, and life satisfaction were correlated with each other. The senior residents who participated in service and volunteer activities were more likely to feel satisfied in life. The senior residents who were motivated by learning, discovering, and exploring also experienced higher level of life satisfaction. In addition, there were differences in leisure participation, leisure motivation, and life satisfaction among demographic groups. The senior residents who were self-paid, attained higher education, married, or possessed good health performed better in leisure participation, leisure motivation, and life satisfaction.
It was concluded that the elements of leisure, lifelong learning, volunteerism, support from families, and partnership played important roles in elders' life. For the government, the policy and decision makers should include leisure into senior care institutions so the elders can reach successful aging by experiencing satisfaction in life. On the other hand, the elders should have an understanding of leisure so they can maintain good physical and psychological health in their later life.