A summary of focus group findings to support information collected from a survey of older adults about walking in three distinct types of communities in New Jersey.
In order to more fully understand the walking habits, barriers, and needs of older adults in New Jersey, the VTC research team conducted three focus groups with this population. A focus group is a type of qualitative research that provides researchers with an opportunity to build on survey data findings in a number of ways. First, by convening a facilitated conversation among seniors with open-ended questions and a series of prompts related to walking, participants have the opportunity to provide deeper insight into their unique walking experiences as older adults, in contrast to simply responding to a survey question. Next, focus groups foster the collection of diverse views on a given topic and encourage participants to discuss issues that researchers may not have thought of as vital to the topic. Finally, the focus group format allows the research team to use photos or other visual aids to help stimulate conversation.