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We compared the effects of body-weight resistance training (BWT), at moderate or high-speed conditions, on muscle power, velocity of movement, and functional performance in older females. In a randomized single-blinded non-controlled trial, participants completed twelve weeks (three sessions/week) of BWT, at high (HST; n=14; age, 70.6±4.3 years) or moderate (MST; n=12; age, 72.8±4.2 years) speeds. Data were analysed with an ANOVA (group×time), with level set at <0.05. After the intervention, timed-up-and-go test performance (p<0.05), and the rising-from-a-chair test mean (22.4%) and maximal velocity (28.5%), mean (24.4%) and maximal power (27.7%), normalized mean (25.1%) and maximal power (28.5%) increased in the HST group (p<0.05). However, the MST group achieved no improvements (p>0.2). We conclude that high-speed BWT is an effective and economically practical strategy to improve the functional capacity of older women, relevant to daily life activities.
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... Power for most of the studies involved specific instructions to move the weights "as fast or as quickly as possible" on the concentric action and 2 to 3 seconds for the eccentric action. Most trials used resistance training machines, 4 used pneumatic machines, 30,33,35,37 1 used free weights, 45 1 used body weight, 47 and 1 used vests. 50 The comparison group mainly used the same exercises but performed the exercises at a slower speed (2-3 seconds). ...
Strength training exercise is recommended for improving physical function in older adults. However, whether strength training (lifting and lowering weights under control) and power training (PT) (lifting weights fast and lowering under control) are associated with improved physical function in older adults is not clear.
To evaluate whether PT vs traditional strength training is associated with physical function improvement in older adults.
Systematic searches of MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Central, CINAHL, PsycInfo, PEDro, and SPORTDiscus were conducted from database inception to October 20, 2021.
Randomized clinical trials (RCTs) that compared strength training with instructions to move the weight as fast as possible in the lifting phase with traditional strength training in healthy, community-living older adults (age ≥60 years).
Data extraction and synthesis:
Two authors independently selected trials, extracted data, assessed the risk of bias using the Cochrane risk-of-bias tool 2, and assessed the certainty of the evidence using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation approach. Summary effect size measures were calculated using a multilevel random-effects model with cluster robust variance estimation and are reported as standardized mean differences (SMDs). Reporting followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses guideline.
Main outcomes and measures:
Primary outcomes included physical function and self-reported physical function. Secondary outcomes included power, strength, muscle mass, walk speed, balance, and adverse effects.
A total of 20 RCTs enrolling 566 community-living older adults (mean [SD] age, 70.1 [4.8] years; 368 [65%] women) were included. For the primary outcomes, PT was associated with an improvement in physical function with low-certainty evidence in 13 RCTs (n = 383) (SMD, 0.30; 95% CI, 0.05-0.54) and self-reported function with low-certainty evidence in 3 RCTs (n = 85) (SMD, 0.38; 95% CI, -0.62 to 1.37). The evidence was downgraded by 2 levels for high risk of bias and imprecision for physical function and very serious imprecision for self-reported physical function.
Conclusions and relevance:
In this systematic review and meta-analysis, PT was associated with a modest improvement in physical function compared with traditional strength training in healthy, community-living older adults. However, high-quality, larger RCTs are required to draw more definitive conclusions.
... Resistance exercise can be characterized as voluntary contractions against an external load. It is typically performed with specifically designed equipment, free weights, and/or elastic bands , although it can also be performed using bodyweight as resistance . Resistance exercise is widely recognized as a key strategy to promote beneficial effects for the average population, such as reversing muscle loss, reducing body fat, and improving physical function and mental health [140,141]. ...
ncreased visceral adiposity may influence the development of prostate cancer (PCa) aggressive tumors and cancer mortality. White adipose tissue (WAT), usually referred to as periprostatic adipose tissue (PPAT), surrounds the prostatic gland and has emerged as a potential mediator of the tumor microenvironment. Exercise training (ET) induces several adaptations in both skeletal muscle and WAT. Some of these effects are mediated by ET-induced synthesis and secretion of several proteins, known as myo- and adipokines. Together, myokines and adipokines may act in an endocrine-like manner to favor communication between skeletal muscle and WAT, as they may work together to improve whole-body metabolic health. This crosstalk may constitute a potential mechanism by which ET exerts its beneficial role in the prevention and treatment of PCa-related disorders; however, this has not yet been explored. Therefore, we reviewed the current evidence on the effects of skeletal muscle–WAT–tumor crosstalk in PCa, and the potential mediators of this process to provide a better understanding of underlying ET-related mechanisms in cancer.
Skeletal muscle undergoes structural changes with ageing which may alter its biomechanical properties. Shear wave elastography (SWE) may detect these changes by measuring muscle stiffness.
To investigate muscle stiffness in healthy young, middle-aged and elderly cohorts using SWE and correlate it with muscle strength and mass.
Shear wave velocity (SWV) was measured in the quadriceps, hamstrings and biceps brachii of 26 young (range 20–35 years), 21 middle-aged (40–55) and 30 elderly (77–94) volunteers. The participants performed several muscle tests to evaluate their strength. The One-way ANOVA was used to test the muscle stiffness differences between the groups and the Pearson’s correlation coefficient to evaluate the relationship between SWV and muscle strength.
The overall resting muscle SWV gradually decreased with age but was only significantly reduced in the elderly group (p < 0.001); with the exception of the vastus lateralis SWV where a significant difference was noted (p < 0.05) between young (1.77 m/s), middle-aged (1.64 m/s) and elderly (1.48 m/s). The elderly group had on average 16.5% lower muscle stiffness compared to the young. SWV significantly correlated with muscle mass (r = 0.316), walking time (r = − 0.560), number of chair stands (r = 0.522), handgrip strength (r = 0.436) and isokinetic knee strength (r = 0.640). Sex and BMI did not explain any significant variation in SWV.
Ageing was associated with a decline in skeletal muscle stiffness which positively correlates with muscle weakness. Further research is needed to evaluate the promising role of SWE as a biomarker for sarcopenia assessment and potential falls risk prediction in elderly individuals.
Jump training (JT) can be used to enhance the ability of skeletal muscle to exert maximal force in as short a time as possible. Despite its usefulness as a method of performance enhancement in athletes, only a small number of studies have investigated its effects on muscle power in older adults.
The aims of this meta-analysis were to measure the effect of JT on muscular power in older adults (≥ 50 years), and to establish appropriate programming guidelines for this population.
The data sources utilised were Google Scholar, PubMed, and Microsoft Academic.
Study Eligibility Criteria
Studies were eligible for inclusion if they comprised JT interventions in healthy adults (≥ 50 years) who were free of any medical condition that could impair movement.
Study Appraisal and Synthesis Methods
The inverse variance random-effects model for meta-analyses was used because it allocates a proportionate weight to trials based on the size of their individual standard errors and facilitates analysis while accounting for heterogeneity across studies. Effect sizes (ESs), calculated from a measure of muscular power, were represented by the standardised mean difference and were presented alongside 95% confidence intervals (CIs).
Thirteen training groups across nine studies were included in this meta-analysis. The magnitude of the main effect was ‘moderate’ (0.66, 95% CI 0.33, 0.98). ESs were larger in non-obese participants (body mass index [BMI] < 30 vs. ≥ 30 kg/m²; 1.03 [95% CI 0.34, 1.73] vs. 0.53 [95% CI − 0.03, 1.09]). Among the studies included in this review, just one reported an acute injury, which did not result in the participant ceasing their involvement. JT was more effective in programmes with more than one exercise (range 1–4 exercises; ES = 0.74 [95% CI − 0.49, 1.96] vs. 0.53 [95% CI 0.29, 0.78]), more than two sets per exercise (range 1–4 sets; ES = 0.91 [95% CI 0.04, 1.77] vs. 0.68 [95% CI 0.15, 1.21]), more than three jumps per set (range 1–14 jumps; ES = 1.02 [95% CI 0.16, 1.87] vs. 0.53 [95% CI − 0.03, 1.09]) and more than 25 jumps per session (range 6–200 jumps; ES = 0.88 [95% CI 0.05, 1.70] vs. 0.49 [95% CI 0.14, 0.83]).
JT is safe and effective in older adults. Practitioners should construct varied JT programmes that include more than one exercise and comprise more than two sets per exercise, more than three jumps per set, and 60 s of recovery between sets. An upper limit of three sets per exercise and ten jumps per set is recommended. Up to three training sessions per week can be performed.
The construct of sarcopenia is still discussed with regard to best appropriate measures of muscle volume and muscle function. The aim of this post-hoc analysis of a cross-sectional experimental study was to investigate and describe the hierarchy of the association between thigh muscle volume and measurements of functional performance in older women. Thigh muscle volume of 68 independently living older women (mean age 77.6 years) was measured via magnetic resonance imaging. Isometric strength was assessed for leg extension in a movement laboratory in sitting position with the knee flexed at 90° and for hand grip. Maximum and habitual gait speed was measured on an electronic walk way. Leg muscle power was measured during single leg push and during sit-to-stand performance. Thigh muscle volume was associated with sit-to-stand performance power (r = 0.628), leg push power (r = 0.550), isometric quadriceps strength (r = 0.442), hand grip strength (r = 0.367), fast gait speed (r = 0.291), habitual gait speed (r = 0.256), body mass index (r = 0.411) and age (r = -0.392). Muscle power showed the highest association with thigh muscle volume in healthy older women. Sit-to-stand performance power showed an even higher association with thigh muscle volume compared to single leg push power.
Falls in older adults are a global public health crisis, but mounting evidence from randomized controlled trials shows that falls can be reduced through exercise. Public health authorities and healthcare professionals endorse the use of evidence-based, exercise-focused fall interventions, but there are major obstacles to translating and disseminating research findings into healthcare practice, including lack of evidence of the transferability of efficacy trial results to clinical and community settings, insufficient local expertise to roll out community exercise programs, and inadequate infrastructure to integrate evidence-based programs into clinical and community practice. The practical solutions highlighted in this article can be used to address these evidence-to-practice challenges. Falls and their associated healthcare costs can be reduced by better integrating research on exercise intervention into clinical practice and community programs.
The number of older adults (individuals ≥ 65 years) particularly women, in our society is increasing and understanding the impact of exercise on muscle capacity (e.g., strength and power) and subsequently physical function is of utmost importance to prevent disability and maintain independence. Muscle capacity declines with age and this change negatively impacts physical function in older women. Exercise, specifically resistance training, is recommended to counteract these declines; however, the synergistic relationships between exercise, muscle capacity, and physical function are poorly understood. This review will summarize the literature regarding age-related changes in the aforementioned variables and review the research on the impact of resistance training interventions on muscle capacity and physical function in older women. Recommendations for future research in this area will be discussed.
Abstract This study investigated how coach and teammates influence masters athletes' sport commitment, and the effect of functional and obligatory commitments on participation in masters swimming. The sample consisted of 523 masters swimmers (330 males and 193 females) aged between 22 and 83 years (M = 39.00, SD = 10.42). A bi-dimensional commitment scale was used to measure commitment dimensions and perceived influence from social agents. Structural equation modelling analysis was conducted to evaluate the influence of social agents on functional and obligatory commitments, and the predictive capabilities of the two types of commitment towards sport participation. Support provided by coach and teammates increased functional commitment, constraints from these social agents determined higher obligatory commitment, and coach constraints negatively impacted functional commitment. In addition, both commitment types predicted training participation, with functional commitment increasing participation in team training sessions, and obligatory commitment increasing the hours of individual training. The findings suggest that in order to increase participation in masters swimming teams and reduce non-supervised training, coach and teammates should exhibit a supportive attitude and avoid over expectation.
To assess effects of a short-term strength training (ST) program on muscle quality (MQ) and functional capacity, 36 sedentary elderly women (age = 66.0 ± 8 year, height = 159.1 ± 9.2 cm, body mass = 68.3 ± 12.1 kg, body fat = 37.0 ± 4.2 %) were randomly divided into an experimental group (EG; n = 19) or a control group (CG; n = 17). The EG performed two to three sets of 12-15 repeats of leg press, knee extension, and knee flexion exercises, 2 days/week for 6 weeks. Before and after training, lower body one repetition maximum (1RM), functional performance tests, quadriceps femoris muscle thickness (MT), and muscle quality (MQ) (1RM and quadriceps MT quotient) were assessed. After training, only the EG showed significant improvements in 1RM (p < 0.05), 30-s sit-to-stand (p < 0.001), and 8 foot up-and-go (p < 0.001). In addition, only in the EG, significant increases in all quadriceps femoris MT measurements (vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, vastus intermedius, and rectus femoris) (p ≤ 0.05), and MQ (p < 0.001) were demonstrated. No changes were observed in the CG. Furthermore, there were significant associations between individual changes in MQ and corresponding changes in 30-s sit-to-stand (r = 0.62, p < 0.001), and 8 foot up-and-go (r = -0.71, p < 0.001). In conclusion, a ST program of only 6 weeks was sufficient to enhance MQ of the knee extensors in elderly women, which resulted in beneficial changes in functional capacity.
REID, K.F. and R.A. FIELDING. Skeletal muscle power: a critical determinant of physical functioning in older adults. Exerc. Sport Sci. Rev., Vol. 40, No. 1, pp. 4-12, 2012. Muscle power declines earlier and more precipitously with advancing age compared with muscle strength. Peak muscle power also has emerged as an important predictor of functional limitations in older adults. Our current working hypothesis is focused on examining lower extremity muscle power as a more discriminant variable for understanding the relationships between impairments, functional limitations, and resultant disability with aging.
Physical exercise is advised as a preventive and therapeutic strategy against aging-induced bone weakness. In this study we examined the effects of 8-month multicomponent training with weight-bearing exercises on different risk factors of falling, including muscle strength, balance, agility, and bone mineral density (BMD) in older women. Participants were randomly assigned to either an exercise-training group (ET, n = 30) or a control group (CON, n = 30). Twenty-seven subjects in the ET group and 22 in the CON group completed the study. Training was performed twice a week and was designed to load bones with intermittent and multidirectional compressive forces and to improve physical function. Outcome measures included lumbar spine and proximal femoral BMD (by dual X-ray absorptiometry), muscle strength, balance, handgrip strength, walking performance, fat mass, and anthropometric data. Potential confounding variables included dietary intake, accelerometer-based physical activity, and molecularly defined lactase nonpersistence. After 8 months, the ET group decreased percent fat mass and improved handgrip strength, postural sway, strength on knee flexion at 180°/s, and BMD at the femoral neck (+2.8%). Both groups decreased waist circumference and improved dynamic balance, chair stand performance, strength on knee extension for the right leg at 180°/s, and knee flexion for both legs at 60°/s. No associations were found between lactase nonpersistence and BMD changes. Data suggest that 8 months of moderate-impact weight-bearing and multicomponent exercises reduces the potential risk factors for falls and related fractures in older women.
The main purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of 8-wk periodized plyometric training (PT) on chair-rise, jumping and sprinting performance in three groups of women of different age (40-50; 50-60; 60-70 years).
This study involved a group of 55 women between the ages of 40 and 70 with no PT experience participating in a gymnastic program and recreational activity that did not involve jumping and who had participated since five years. All tests to determine the values of strength endurance, vertical jumping performance (VJP) and velocity were carried out before (PRE), after (POST) and following 8 weeks of rest (DETRAINING) of the 8 weeks of PT. The performance tests were completed in 3 days.
The primary finding of this investigation indicates that low impact PT using moderate volume of jumps produced similar enhancements in the three age groups of women in jumping and chair-rise performance (30 CST) (ranging 15-24 %). There were no enhancements in 10 m-sprint time in any of the age groups. In addition, 8 weeks of detraining following an 8 week PT program resulted in similar decreases in chair-rise and jumping performance in all training groups, whereas no further changes were observed in 10-m sprint time.
The low impact PT proposed appears to be an optimal stimulus for improving VJP and 30 CST during short-term training periods in untrained middle-aged and elderly women.
To assess the relationship of maximal leg power and its corresponding determinants (eg, optimal velocity and optimal torque) measured during maximal voluntary knee extension to physical functional performance of older women.
Community retirement homes.
Women (N=39) aged 72 to 96 years.
Volunteers performed in sitting position maximal knee extensions on an Ergopower dynamometer to calculate maximal leg power, optimal velocity, and optimal torque. Three standardized tests were also performed to evaluate physical performance: walking speed over 6m, time taken to rise 5 times from a chair, and time to climb 6 stairs.
On multiple regression analysis, leg power (mean, 1.37+/-0.80 W/kg) significantly correlated with physical performance as measured by 6-m walking speed (mean, .85+/-.40 m/s), chair-stand time (mean, 16.3+/-7.7s), and stair-climb time (mean, 7+/-4s), describing 16% to 33% of the variance. Optimal velocity (mean, 1.79+/-1.20 rad/s) also significantly correlated with 6-m walking speed, chair-stand time, and stair-climb time, describing 46% to 89% of the variance. Optimal torque (50.8+/-16.9 Nm) did not correlate with physical performance.
Maximal power and moreover optimal velocity were thus found to be determinants of physical performance, both appearing as significant mobility factors in older adults. This may provide more focus on velocity-oriented training as a means of improving functional status.
The present study aimed at analysing the age-related decline in maximal muscle power (W˙) in 52 sedentary healthy women aged between 50 and 75 years to determine whether force or velocity is the major determinant. Maximal muscle power was estimated from two types of vertical jumps, squatting (SJ) and counter‐movement (CmJ), performed on a force platform. It was obtained by measuring the vertical force (F
opt) applied to the body centre of gravity and calculating the corresponding vertical velocity (\(\)
opt). An age-related decline in absolute W˙ was statistically significant in all the conditions examined and in both peak W˙ and average power (\(\)) values. The decrease in \(\)
opt was also statistically significant. Also Fopt declined but this reduction was not statistically significant with the exception of the average value in CmJ. Not surprisingly the highest W˙ were obtained in CmJ, and the difference in power production between the two types of jump showed an age-related decrement only in \(\). The main finding of the study was the demonstration that \(\)
opt was the critical determinant of the age-related decline in W˙ in healthy elderly women.
Effects of a 24-week strength training performed twice weekly (24 ST) (combined with explosive exercises) followed by either a 3-week detraining (3 DT) and a 21-week re-strength-training (21 RST) (experiment A) or by a 24-week detraining (24 DT) (experiment B) on neural activation of the agonist and antagonist leg extensors, muscle cross-sectional area (CSA) of the quadriceps femoris, maximal isometric and one repetition maximum (1-RM) strength and jumping (J) and walking (W) performances were examined. A group of middle-aged (M, 37-44 years, n = 12) and elderly (E, 62-77, n = 10) and another group of M (35-45, n = 7) and E (63-78, n = 7) served as subjects. In experiment A, the 1-RM increased substantially during 24 ST in M (27%, P<0.001) and E (29%, P<0.001) and in experiment B in M (29%, P<0.001) and E (23%, P<0.01). During 21 RST the 1-RM was increased by 5% at week 48 (P<0.01) in M and 3% at week 41 in E (n.s., but P<0.05 at week 34). In experiment A the integrated electromyogram (IEMG) of the vastus muscles in the 1-RM increased during 24 ST in both M (P<0.05) and E (P<0.001) and during 21 RST in M for the right (P<0.05) and in E for both legs (P<0.05). The biceps femoris co-activation during the 1-RM leg extension decreased during the first 8-week training in M (from 29+/-5% to 25+/-3%, n.s.) and especially in E (from 41+/-11% to 32+/-9%, P<0.05). The CSA increased by 7% in M (P<0.05) and by 7% in E (P<0.001), and by 7% (n.s.) in M and by 3% in E (n.s.) during 24 ST periods. Increases of 18% (P<0.001) and 12% (P<0.05) in M and 22% (P<0.001) and 26% (P<0.05) in E occurred in J. W speed increased (P<0.05) in both age groups. The only decrease during 3 DT was in maximal isometric force in M by 6% (P<0.05) and by 4% (n.s.) in E. During 24 DT the CSA decreased in both age groups (P<0.01), the 1-RM decreased by 6% (P<0.05) in M and by 4% (P<0.05) in E and isometric force by 12% (P<0.001) in M and by 9% (P<0.05) in E, respectively, while J and W remained unaltered. The strength gains were accompanied by increased maximal voluntary neural activation of the agonists in both age groups with reduced antagonist co-activation in the elderly during the initial training phases. Neural adaptation seemed to play a greater role than muscle hypertrophy. Short-term detraining led to only minor changes, while prolonged detraining resulted in muscle atrophy and decreased voluntary strength, but explosive jumping and walking actions in both age groups appeared to remain elevated for quite a long time by compensatory types of physical activities when performed on a regular basis.
The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of simple, progressive lower body exercise training, focusing on strength and power, on functional abilities in frail older adults. Twenty-five residents of a long-term care facility (75-94 yrs) participated in this randomized controlled trial of 10-wks duration. The exercise group (Ex, n = 18) underwent simple, progressive lower body resistance exercises, specifically aimed at improving muscle power, 3 times/wk; the control subjects (Con, n = 7) maintained their usual daily activities. Knee extensor strength and power were measured on an isokinetic dynamometer (180 degrees/s), and functional performance was assessed from a 6-m walk timed test, a 30-s chair stand, and an 8-ft up-and-go timed test, before and after the 10-wk intervention period. Significant increases were found in the Ex group for eccentric (44%) and concentric (60%) average power (p < 0.05), and improvements were seen on each functional test: the 8-foot up-and-go, chair stand, and walk time improved by 31%, 66%, and 33%, respectively (p < 0.05). No significant change occurred in the Con group. In conclusion, simple progressive exercise training, even in the 10th decade, increases muscle power and is associated with an improved performance of functional activities using the trained muscles.
The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between muscle power output at different external resistances and performance of functional tasks. The authors hypothesized that power at 40% skeletal muscle 1 repetition maximum (1RM), in which contraction velocity is high, would explain more of the variability in tasks such as level walking than would peak power or 1RM strength, in which contraction velocity is lower.
Participants were men and women (n = 48; ages 65-91 years) with physical disability as evidenced by 2 or more deficits on the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form physical function subscale or a score of 9 or less on the Established Populations for the Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly short physical performance battery. Muscle strength (1RM) was measured using a bilateral leg press exercise, and power output was determined by selecting the highest power output from 6 different contraction velocities: 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, and 90% 1RM. Functional performance tasks consisted of habitual gait velocity (HGV) and stair climb (SC) and chair rise (CR) performance. Separate linear regression models were fit for each of the 3 dependent variables (SC, CR, HGV) using 1RM strength, power at 70% 1RM, and power at 40% 1RM as independent variables. All models were adjusted for age, body mass, and sex.
Lower extremity power at 70% and 40% 1RM demonstrated greater associations with SC and HGV than did 1RM strength, whereas power at 40% 1RM demonstrated similar or stronger associations with all functional tasks compared with 1RM strength. Power at 40% 1RM explained the same or more of the variability in SC (R(2) = .42 [regression coefficient = -.169 +/- .06] vs .43 [-.206 +/- .071]), CR (R(2) = .28 [-.154 +/- .057] vs .24 [-.152 + .070]) and HGV (R(2) = .59 [.214 + .37] vs .51 [.223 +/- .049]) compared with power at 70% 1RM. Power at 40% 1RM explained more of the variability in the lower intensity (HGV) compared with the higher intensity (SC or CR) functions.
Power output at 40% of 1RM explained more of the variability in HGV than did power at 70% 1RM, suggesting that measures such as HGV that require a lower percentage of maximal strength to perform might be more sensitive to differences in contraction velocity. Because HGV is highly predictive of subsequent disability, future studies should evaluate the determinants of muscle power output at low external resistances.
Risk factors for medically unexplained falls may include reduced muscle power, strength and asymmetry in the lower limbs. Conflicting reports exist about strength and there is little information about power and symmetry. Forty-four healthy young people (29.3 +/- 0.6 years), 44 older non-fallers (75.9 +/- 0.6 years), and 34 older fallers (76.4 +/- 0.8 years) were studied. Isometric, concentric and eccentric strength of the knee and ankle muscles and leg extension power were measured bilaterally. The younger group was stronger in all muscles and types of contraction than both older groups (P < 0.02-0.0001). Strength differences between the older groups occasionally reached significance in individual muscles and types of contraction but overall the fallers had 85% of the strength and 79% of the power of the non-fallers (P < 0.001). Young subjects generated more power than both older groups (P < 0.0001) and the fallers generated less than the non-fallers (P = 0.03). Strength symmetry showed an inconsistent age effect in some muscles and some contraction types. This was similar overall in the two older groups. Both older groups had greater asymmetry in power than the young (P < 0.02-0.004). Power asymmetry tended to be greater in the fallers than the non-fallers but this did not reach significance. These data do not support the suggestion that asymmetry of strength and power are associated with either increasing age or fall history. Power output showed clear differences between age groups and fall status and appears to be the most relevant measurement of fall risk and highlights the cumulative effects on function of small changes in strength in individual muscle groups.
This study investigated the effect of a 10-week power training (PT) program versus traditional resistance training (TRT) on functional performance, and muscular power and strength in older men. Twenty inactive volunteers (60-76 years old) were randomly assigned to a PT group (three 8-10 repetition sets performed as fast a possible at 60% of 1-RM) or a TRT group (three 8-10 repetition sets with 2-3 s contractions at 60% of 1-RM). Both groups exercised 2 days/week with the same work output. Outcomes were measured with the Rikli and Jones functional fitness test and a bench and leg press test of maximal power and strength (1-RM). Significant differences between and within groups were analyzed using a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). At 10 weeks there was a significantly (P < 0.05) greater improvement in measures of functional performance in the PT group. Arm curling improved by 50 versus 3% and a 30 s chair-stand improved by 43 versus 6% in the PT and TRT groups, respectively. There was also a significantly greater improvement in muscular power (P < 0.05) in the PT group. The bench press improved by 37 versus 13%, and the leg press by 31 and 8% in the PT and TRT groups, respectively. There was no significant difference between groups in improved muscular strength. It appears that in older men there may be a significantly greater improvement in functional performance and muscular power with PT versus low velocity resistance training.
The current literature indicates that functional capacity is associated with physical performance and body composition measurements in older adults. However, it is not clear which tests can best explain the functional capacity in this population. This study aimed to investigate the physical performance and body composition determinants of functional capacity in older adults.
Twenty-four older adults (66.4 ± 4.7y) undertook body composition (body fat and muscle), rate of torque development (0–50 and 0–200 ms); countermovement jump (height, power and impulse); leg-press and seated-leg-curl 5-repetition maximum; and functional-performance tests (Timed-up-and-go, stair ascent and stair descent).
Timed-up-and-go correlated with countermovement jump (height, R² = 0.303; power, R² = 0.198; and impulse, R² = 0.224) and 5-repetition maximum (seated-leg-curl, R² = 0.172). Stair ascent correlated with body fat (R² = 0.213), rate of torque development (0–50 ms/body fat, R² = 0.301; 0–200 ms, R² = 0.197; 0–200 ms/body fat, R² = 0.340), countermovement jump (height, R² = 0.325; power/body fat, R² = 0.413; impulse/body fat, R² = 0.422) and 5-repetiton maximum (leg-press/body fat, R² = 0.384; seated-leg-curl/body fat, R² = 0.341). Stair descent correlated with rate of torque development (0–50 ms/body fat, R² = 0.164; 0–200 ms, R² = 0.203; 0–200 ms/body fat, R² = 0.213), countermovement jump (height, R² = 0.458; power, R² = 0.212; power/body fat, R² = 0.358; impulse, R² = 0.218; impulse/body fat, R² = 0.369) and 5-repetition maximum (leg-press/body fat, R² = -0.227; seated-leg-curl/body fat, R² = 0.209; seated-leg-curl, R² = 0.181).
Higher body fat is associated with weaker stair ascent performance. An increase in the correlation coefficient was observed for the countermovement jump, rate of torque development, and 5-repetition maximum tests when normalized by body fat compared to the absolute values. Countermovement jump height presented the highest correlation to timed-up-and-go and stair descent, while impulse/body fat for stair ascent.
To examine the effect of a conditioning program consisting of repeated sit-to-stand exercise on knee extensor strength and muscular activities during body mass-based squat movement in physically frail elders.
Fourteen men and women aged 75 to 88 years who used the long-term care insurance system participated in the 12-week training program (48 reps/session, 3 sessions/week). Isometric knee extension torque (KET) during a maximum voluntary contraction (MVC) and electromyogram (EMG) activities of the rectus femoris and vastus lateralis muscles during the MVC and a body mass-based squat task were determined at baseline, and following 4 and 12 weeks training. KET was expressed relative to body mass (KET/BM) and EMG activities during the squat task were normalized to that during a MVC and averaged (QF %EMGmax).
KET/BM increased from 1.07 ± 0.28 Nm/kg at baseline to 1.26 ± 0.26 Nm/kg at week 4 and 1.31 ± 0.28 Nm/kg at week 12 (P < 0.001), and QF %EMGmax decreased from 67.2 ± 17.2% to 49.3% at week 4 (P < 0.001) and 43.5 ± 7.7% at week 12 (P = 0.016). At each of the three measurement time points KET/BM was inversely correlated with QF %EMGmax (r = -0.78 to -0.86, P ≤ 0.001).
For physically frail elders, a short-term conditioning program consisting of repeated sit-to-stand exercise is effective in increasing knee extensor strength and reducing the muscular effort required for lowering and raising the body.
Objective: to compare the effects of 12 weeks of high-speed resistance training on functional performance and quality of life in elderly women when using either a traditional-set (TS) or a cluster-set (CS) configuration for inter-set rest.
Methods: Three groups of subjects were formed by block-design randomization as follows: (i) control group (CG, n=17; age, 66.5±5.4 years); (ii) 12-week high-speed resistance training group under a CS configuration (CSG, n=15; age, 67.6±5.4 years); and (iii) 12-week high-speed resistance training group under a TS configuration (TSG, n=20; age, 68.0±5.3 years). Training was undertaken three times per week, including high-speed resistance training exercises. The main difference between the training groups was the recovery set structure. In the TSG, women rested for 150 s after each set of eight repetitions, whereas the CSG used an interest rest redistribution, such that after two consecutive repetitions, a 30-s rest was allowed.
Results: Group×test interactions were observed for a 10-m walking speed test, an 8-foot up-and-go test, a sit-to-stand test, and physical quality of life (p<0.05; d=0.12-0.81). The main results suggest that both training methods improve functional performance and quality of life, however, the CS configuration induced significantly greater improvements in functional performance and quality of life than the TS configuration.
Conclusion: these results should be considered when designing appropriate and better resistance training programs for older adults.
A plethora of research has supported the numerous health benefits of resistance training as we age, including positive relationships between muscular strength, muscle mass and reduced all-cause mortality. As such, resistance training has been referred to as medicine. However, participation and adherence remains low, with time constraints and perceived difficulty often cited as barriers to resistance training. With this in mind, we aimed to summarise the benefits which might be obtained as a product of a minimal dose approach. In this sense, participation in resistance training might serve as a prophylactic to delay or prevent the onset of biological aging. A short review of studies reporting considerable health benefits resulting from low volume resistance training participation is presented, specifically considering the training time, frequency, intensity of effort, and exercises performed. Research supports the considerable physiological and psychological health benefits from resistance training and suggests that these can be obtained using a minimal dose approach (e.g. ≤60min, 2d-wk(-1)), using uncomplicated equipment/methods (e.g. weight stack machines). Our hope is that discussion of these specific recommendations, and provision of an example minimal dose workout, will promote resistance training participation by persons who might otherwise have not engaged. We also encourage medical professionals to use this information to prescribe resistance exercise like a drug whilst having an awareness of the health benefits and uncomplicated methods.
Older women participated in a 12-week high-speed resistance training program under two supervisor-to-subject ratio methods (i.e., high versus low supervision) in order to assess its effects on muscle strength, power, functional performance, and quality of life assessed before (T1) and after (T2) intervention. Women were divided into control group (CG, n = 15), high supervision group (HSG, n = 30), and low supervision group (LSG, n = 28). The training program included exercises requiring high-speed concentric muscle actions. No differences were observed among groups at T1. Between T1 and T2 the HSG showed a higher (p<0.05) improvement in muscle strength (ES = 0.36-1.26), power (ES = 0.5-0.88), functional performance (ES = 0.52-0.78), and quality of life (ES = 0.44-0.82) compared to LSG and CG. High-speed resistance training under closer supervision is more effective for improving muscle strength, power, functional performance, and quality of life in older women.
In the ageing muscle, many changes occur. Some are on an architectural level, like alterations in muscle composition, or modifications in the characteristics of the muscle fiber itself, where muscle fiber length, orientation and type change. Other changes are neuronal, which occur on all levels, from the central activation over the spinal properties down to the level of the motor unit and the neuromuscular junction. There are also hormonal factors that undergo agerelated concentration variations. All these alterations in the muscle have an effect on both strength and function. In this matter, they contribute to the process of sarcopenia. Although many different components are identified, it is still unclear to what degree these components contribute to the loss of muscle mass, strength and function. This review summarizes the occurring physiological and anatomical changes within the ageing muscle and links them to outcomes such as strength and function.
FOR CENTURIES, MAN HAS SOUGHT OUT THE MOST EFFECTIVE METHODS TO BUILD STRENGTH, VIGOR, AND VITALITY. OVER THE YEARS, METHODS HAVE EVOLVED, SOME HAVE VANISHED, AND SOME NEVER WENT AWAY, ALTHOUGH SOMETIMES NEGLECTED AND FORGOTTEN. THIS COLUMN HIGHLIGHTS THE ADVANTAGES, DISADVANTAGES, AND TRAINING PROGRESSIONS TO ONE OF THE SIMPLEST METHODS OF TRAINING AND CONDITIONING KNOWN TO MAN, BODYWEIGHT TRAINING.
Declined balance functions have adverse effects on elderly population. Lower limbs muscle power training is currently an emerging concept in rehabilitation on individuals with decreased balance and mobility. In this prospective, controlled study, we used a human-computer interactive video-game-based rehabilitation device (LLPR) for training of lower limb muscle power in the elderly. Forty (aged>65years) individuals were recruited from the community. Twenty participants in the exercise group received 30-min training, twice a week, using the LLPR system. The LLPR system allows participants to perform fast speed sit-to-stand (STS) movements. Twenty age-matched participants in the control group performed slow speed STS movements, as well as strengthening and balance exercises, with the same frequency and duration. The results were compared after 12 sessions (6weeks) of training. The mechanical and time parameters during STS movement were measured using the LLPR system. Modified falls efficacy scale (MFES), Tinetti Performance-Oriented Mobility Assessment (POMA), function reach test, five times sit to stand (FTSS) and Timed Up and Go (TUG) were administered to participants as clinical assessments. Results showed that in the exercise group, all the mechanical and time parameters showed significant improvement. In control group, only the maximal vertical ground reaction force (MVGRF) improved significantly. For clinical assessments (balance, mobility, and self-confidence), exercise group showed significantly better scores. The STS movements in video-game-based training mimic real life situations which may help to transfer the training effects into daily activities. The effectiveness of lower limb muscle training is worthy of further investigation.
To determine which component of leg power (maximal limb strength or limb velocity) is more influential on balance performance in mobility limited elders.
In this cross-sectional analysis we evaluated 138 community-dwelling older adults with mobility limitation. Balance was measured using the Unipedal Stance Test, the Berg Balance Test (BERG), the Dynamic Gait Index, and the performance-oriented mobility assessment. We measured one repetition maximum strength and power at 40% one repetition maximum strength, from which velocity was calculated. The associations between maximal estimated leg strength and velocity with balance performance were examined using separate multivariate logistic regression models.
Strength was found to be associated [odds ratio of 1.06 (95% confidence interval, 1.01-1.11)] with performance on the Unipedal Stance Test, whereas velocity showed no statistically significant association. In contrast, velocity was consistently associated with performance on all composite measures of balance (BERG 14.23 [1.84-109.72], performance-oriented mobility assessment 33.92 [3.69-312.03], and Dynamic Gait Index 35.80 [4.77-268.71]). Strength was only associated with the BERG 1.08 (1.01-1.14).
Higher leg press velocity is associated with better performance on the BERG, performance-oriented mobility assessment, and Dynamic Gait Index, whereas greater leg strength is associated with better performance on the Unipedal Stance Test and the BERG. These findings are likely related to the intrinsic qualities of each test and emphasize the relevance of limb velocity.
This study evaluated a modified, timed version of the "Get-Up and Go" Test (Mathias et al, 1986) in 60 patients referred to a Geriatric Day Hospital (mean age 79.5 years). The patient is observed and timed while he rises from an arm chair, walks 3 meters, turns, walks back, and sits down again. The results indicate that the time score is (1) reliable (inter-rater and intra-rater); (2) correlates well with log-transformed scores on the Berg Balance Scale (r = -0.81), gait speed (r = -0.61) and Barthel Index of ADL (r = -0.78); and (3) appears to predict the patient's ability to go outside alone safely. These data suggest that the timed "Up & Go" test is a reliable and valid test for quantifying functional mobility that may also be useful in following clinical change over time. The test is quick, requires no special equipment or training, and is easily included as part of the routine medical examination.
Physiological studies have been made of extensor digitorum brevis muscles in 28 healthy subjects aged between 60 and 96. Within this elderly population there was evidence of muscle wasting and weakness. These changes were shown to result from a loss of functioning motor units. The surviving motor units were often enlarged and tended to have relatively slow twitches. In some subjects the maximum impulse conduction velocities were reduced in motor nerves; there was evidence that slowing of impulse conduction could be especially marked in distal regions of axons. The findings are considered to indicate the presence of motoneurone dysfunction in old age.
Identification of the physiologic factors most relevant to functional independence in the elderly population is critical for the design of effective interventions. It has been suggested that muscle power may be more directly related to impaired physical performance than muscle strength in elderly persons. We tested the hypothesis that peak muscle power is closely associated with self-reported functional status in sedentary elderly community-dwelling women.
We used baseline data that were collected as part of a 1-year randomized controlled clinical trial of a combined program of strength, power, and endurance training in 80 elderly women (mean age 74.8 +/- 5.0 years) with 3.2 +/- 1.9 chronic diseases, selected for baseline functional impairment and/or falls.
Functional status at baseline was related in univariate analyses to physiologic capacity, habitual physical activity level, neuropsychological status, and medical diagnoses. Leg power had the strongest univariate correlation to self-reported functional status (r = -.47, p < .0001) of any of the physiologic factors we tested. In a forward stepwise regression model, leg press power and habitual physical activity level were the only two factors that contributed independently to functional status (r = .64, p < .0001), accounting for 40% of the variance in functional status.
Leg power is a strong predictor of self-reported functional status in elderly women.
Aging leads to significant losses in muscle mass, strength, and the ability to independently perform activities of daily living (ADL). Typically, standard resistance training (RT) has been used to reduce these losses in function by maintaining or even increasing muscle strength in older adults. Increasing strength does not necessarily, however, result in an increase in the ability to perform ADL. There is now research suggesting that muscle power is more closely associated with the performance of ADL than muscle strength is, so training for muscle power might lead to more beneficial results in functional performance. This review of studies investigating the effect of training on ADL performance in older adults indicated that standard RT is effective in increasing strength in older adults, but power training that contains high-velocity contractions might be a more optimal means of training older adults when the emphasis is on increasing the performance of ADL.
Developing a measure of muscular power during a functional task for 454 older adults
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G R Sotoudeh
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