A Behavioral Mechanism of How Increases in Leg Strength Improve Old Adults’ Gait Speed

Alway, Stephen, Uematsu, Azusa, Tsuchiya, Kazushi, Kadono, Norio, Kobayashi, Hirofumi, Kaetsu, Takamasa, Hortobágyi, Tibor and Suzuki, Shuji (2014) A Behavioral Mechanism of How Increases in Leg Strength Improve Old Adults’ Gait Speed. PLoS ONE, 9 (10). e110350. ISSN 1932-6203

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0110350

Abstract

We examined a behavioral mechanism of how increases in leg strength improve healthy old adults’ gait speed. Leg press strength training improved maximal leg press load 40% (p = 0.001) and isometric strength in 5 group of leg muscles 32% (p = 0.001) in a randomly allocated intervention group of healthy old adults (age 74, n = 15) but not in no-exercise control group (age 74, n = 8). Gait speed increased similarly in the training (9.9%) and control (8.6%) groups (time main effect, p = 0.001). However, in the training group only, in line with the concept of biomechanical plasticity of aging gait, hip extensors and ankle plantarflexors became the only significant predictors of self-selected and maximal gait speed. The study provides the first behavioral evidence regarding a mechanism of how increases in leg strength improve healthy old adults’ gait speed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Professor Tibor Hortobágyi is a visiting professor at Northumbria University.
Subjects: B100 Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology
C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 21 Oct 2014 07:52
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2017 04:49
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/17762

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