Is exercise used as medicine? Association of meeting strength training guidelines and functional limitations among older US adults

Jennifer L. Kraschnewski, Christopher N. Sciamanna, Joseph T. Ciccolo, Liza S. Rovniak, Erik B. Lehman, Carolina Candotti, Noel H. Ballentine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: To determine the association between meeting strength training guidelines (≥. 2 times per week) and the presence of functional limitations among older adults. Methods: This cross-sectional study used data from older adult participants (N = 6763) of the National Health Interview Survey conducted in 2011 in the United States. Results: Overall, 16.1% of older adults reported meeting strength training guidelines. For each of nine functional limitations, those with the limitation were less likely to meet strength training recommendations than those without the limitation. For example, 20.0% of those who reported no difficulty walking one-quarter mile met strength training guidelines, versus only 10.1% of those who reported difficulty (p < .001). In sum, 21.7% of those with no limitations (33.7% of sample) met strength training guidelines, versus only 15.9% of those reporting 1-4 limitations (38.5% of sample) and 9.8% of those reporting 5-9 limitations (27.8% of sample) (p. <. .001). Conclusion: Strength training is uncommon among older adults and even less common among those who need it the most. The potential for strength training to improve the public's health is therefore substantial, as those who have the most to gain from strength training participate the least.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalPreventive Medicine
Volume66
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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