Physical Activity for Older Aboriginal Adults: A Call for Cultural Safety

  • Lauren A. Brooks-Cleator University of Ottawa
  • Audrey R. Giles University of Ottawa
Keywords: Cultural safety, Older adults, Aboriginal peoples


The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) released new PA guidelines for Canadians in 2011, including those for older adults, which communicate the ways in which good health can best be achieved. In this paper, we argue that if we are to have PA guidelines for older adults in Canada, they need to be culturally safe for those who experience disproportionate levels of poor health: Aboriginal older adults. Within this paper, we examine the existing guidelines to determine if they are culturally safe. We show that despite qualitative evidence of the need for culturally safe PA opportunities for Aboriginal peoples, the Canadian PA Guidelines for Older Adults (CSEP, 2012) are not culturally safe for Aboriginal peoples. To address this shortcoming, we use health communication strategies to suggest ways in which the Guide, and in turn other PA resources, could be developed to be culturally safe.

Author Biographies

Lauren A. Brooks-Cleator, University of Ottawa
Ph.D. student in the School of Human Kinetics
Audrey R. Giles, University of Ottawa
Associate Professor in the School of Human Kinetics
Feature Articles / Articles de fond