Social Indicators Research

, Volume 127, Issue 3, pp 1377–1389 | Cite as

A Double Test on the Importance of Spirituality, the “Forgotten Factor”, in Successful Aging

  • J. M. TomásEmail author
  • P. Sancho
  • L. Galiana
  • A. Oliver


Rowe and Kahn proposed a model of successful aging, tapping several characteristics of the aging process. However, Rowe and Kahn’s model of successful aging has recently been criticized for not incorporating spirituality in the model. Additionally, life satisfaction has long been recognized as a marker of aging well. Taking life satisfaction as a key outcome of successful aging, the aim of this study is to test for the predictive power of spirituality dimensions on life satisfaction, while controlling for the components of successful aging. Data came from a cross-sectional survey design of 224 community-dwelling Spanish elderly. Structural models with two different measures of spirituality were estimated, and the results fully supported the key role of spirituality for a successful aging. The models predicted life satisfaction with several indicators of Rowe and Kahn’s model and spirituality dimensions. Overall, life satisfaction of the elderly was strongly related to the indicators, and spirituality strongly aided to the prediction of life satisfaction. Results of this research agree with recent literature, as spirituality seemed to be a key element when picturing successful aging, and thus, it should be taken into account in future studies addressing this topic.


Life satisfaction Meaning Peace Intrapersonal spirituality Transpersonal spirituality 



Laura Galiana is beneficiary of a VLC/CAMPUS grant, subprogram Atracció de Talent (University of Valencia).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. M. Tomás
    • 1
    Email author
  • P. Sancho
    • 2
  • L. Galiana
    • 1
  • A. Oliver
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Methodology for the Behavioral SciencesUniversity of ValenciaValenciaSpain
  2. 2.Department of EducationCatholic University of St. AnthonyMurciaSpain

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