Background: Physical activity has been positively linked to quality of life (QOL) in older adults. Measures of health status and global well-being represent common methods of assessing QOL outcomes, yet little has been done to determine the nature of the relationship of these outcomes with physical activity. Purpose: We examined the roles played by physical activity, health status, and self-efficacy in global QOL (satisfaction with life) in a sample of older Black and White women. Method: Participants (N = 249, M age = 68.12 years) completed multiple indicators of physical activity, self-efficacy, health status, and QOL at baseline of a 24-month prospective trial. Structural equation modeling examined the fit of 3 models of the physical activity and QOL relationship. Results: Analyses indicated that relationships between physical activity and QOL, self-efficacy and QOL were all indirect. Specifically, physical activity influenced self-efficacy and QOL through physical and mental health status, which in turn influenced global QOL. Conclusions: Our findings support a social cognitive model of physical activity's relationship with QOL. Subsequent tests of hypothesized relationships across time are recommended. © 2006 by The Society of Behavioral Medicine.