Physical Activity Across Adulthood and Physical Performance in Midlife Findings from a British Birth Cohort

Cooper, Rachel, Mishra, Gita D. and Kuh, Diana (2011) Physical Activity Across Adulthood and Physical Performance in Midlife Findings from a British Birth Cohort. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 41 4: 376-384. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2011.06.035


Author Cooper, Rachel
Mishra, Gita D.
Kuh, Diana
Title Physical Activity Across Adulthood and Physical Performance in Midlife Findings from a British Birth Cohort
Journal name American Journal of Preventive Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0749-3797
1873-2607
Publication date 2011-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.amepre.2011.06.035
Volume 41
Issue 4
Start page 376
End page 384
Total pages 9
Place of publication New York, NY, United States
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background
Evidence, mainly from cross-sectional studies, suggests that physical activity is a potentially important modifiable factor associated with physical performance and strength in older age. It is unclear whether the benefits of physical activity accumulate across life or whether there are sensitive periods when physical activity is more influential.
Purpose
To examine the associations of leisure-time physical activity across adulthood with physical performance and strength in midlife, and to test whether there are cumulative benefits of physical activity.
Methods
Using data on approximately 2400 men and women from the UK Medical Research Council National Survey of Health and Development, followed up since birth in March 1946, the associations of physical activity levels during leisure time self-reported prospectively at ages 36, 43, and 53 years with grip strength, standing balance, and chair rise times, assessed by nurses at age 53 years (in 1999), were examined in 2010.
Results
There were independent positive effects of physical activity at all three ages on chair rise performance, and at ages 43 and 53 years on standing balance performance, even after adjusting for covariates. These results were supported by evidence of cumulative effects found when using structured life course models. Physical activity and grip strength were not associated in women and, in men, only physical activity at age 53 years was associated with grip strength.
Conclusions
There are cumulative benefits of physical activity across adulthood on physical performance in midlife. Increased activity should be promoted early in adulthood to ensure the maintenance of physical performance in later life.
Keyword Life-Style Interventions
Muscle Strength
Older-Adults
Health-Status
Temporal Trends
Grip Strength
Follow-Up
Women
Disability
Capability
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Available online 22 September 2011.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
 
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