Benefits and constraints associated with the use of an urban park reproted by the elderly in Hong Kong
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The purpose of this study was to identify benefits and constraints associated with the use of urban parks by a sample of elderly in Hong Kong. Before studying these topics, self-perception of aging of the elderly in Hong Kong was explored. In-depth interviews were conducted with 13 individuals inside and 12 outside the Tsuen Wan Jockey Club Tak Wah Park. Purposive sampling was used to select the sample. The interviews were semi-structured, based on an interview guide of open-ended questions. Results of the study suggested that although there are some differences in explanations of aging among different countries, some aging models and theories which have been developed in western countries can be employed to interpret the aging phenomenon in Hong Kong. Several constraints and health-related social and psychological benefits of attending a park were reported by the sample. Heterogeneity of leisure constraints among different age cohorts of the elderly was found in the study. Although similarities were found between the benefits reported in this study and those reported in western countries, the magnitude of benefits received from visiting parks may be different because of the different characteristics of elderly in different countries.