Pessimism and Physical Functioning in Older Women: Influence of Self-Efficacy

  • M. Renée Umstattd
  • Edward McAuley
  • Robert W. Motl
  • Karl S. Rosengren
Original Paper

The purpose of the present study was to examine the nature of the relationships among dispositional optimism/pessimism, self-efficacy, and physical function in a cross-sectional sample of older women (N = 249, M age = 69 years). Initial bivariate analyses indicated that both pessimism and self-efficacy, but not optimism, were significantly correlated with objectively measured physical function. Subsequent analyses using covariance modeling with the full-information maximum likelihood estimator indicated that pessimism was no longer correlated with function when controlling for self-efficacy. That is, consistent with a social cognitive perspective, controlling for self-efficacy attenuated the relationship between pessimism and function. Our findings provide support for using a social cognitive perspective to understanding dispositional and modifiable influences on declines in function associated with aging.


physical function dispositional pessimism self-efficacy older adults 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Renée Umstattd
    • 1
    • 2
  • Edward McAuley
    • 1
    • 3
  • Robert W. Motl
    • 1
  • Karl S. Rosengren
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Kinesiology and Community HealthUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Health ScienceUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Kinesiology and Community HealthUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

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