Faculty Publications

U.S. Men’s Sheds: Promoting Meaning, Purpose, and Connection

Document Type



Connection, religion/spirituality, U.S. Men’s Sheds

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Activities, Adaptation and Aging


The purpose of this study was to explore U.S. Men’s Sheds, learn how they operate, who attends them, and how participants perceived sheds. It is the first study exploring Men’s Sheds in the U.S. An explanatory sequential mixed methods study was conducted, and paper-based surveys were sent to sheds registered with the U.S. Men’s Sheds Association. Shed chairpersons encouraged members to complete surveys (N = 76), and results showed that most members were male, older adults, in good health, and joined to make new friends or learn new skills. Four in-depth interviews were also conducted and revealed men participated to give back to their community but at times disagreed on the best way to do so. Some members were focused on sharing their religious beliefs with others whereas others were interested in rebuilding structures in the community. U.S. Men’s Sheds provide members with benefits by providing a sense of continued purpose and engagement. Overall, participants joined because they wanted something worthwhile to do with their time, especially retired men. Future researchers should conduct other interviews with Men’s Sheds members in the U.S. to provide additional insight into shed operations and the activities they are involved in.


Department of Family, Aging & Counseling

Original Publication Date


DOI of published version