Influence of strength training variables on strength gains in adults over 55 years-old: A meta-analysis of dose-response relationships.
Muscle strength is fundamental for the elderly population to maintain functional ability. Though the importance of strength training is well established, the dose-response relationship in this population is still unclear. Hence, this meta-analysis aimed at providing information about the dose-response relationship of strength training in the elderly.
15 randomized controlled trials with healthy individuals of both genders aged 55 years or older were included, when similar strength evaluation techniques (repetition maximum tests) and training routines (dynamic concentric-eccentric knee extension) were used. The dose-response relationship of the variables intensity, number of sets, weekly frequency and training duration on strength improvement was examined.
As expected, all studies revealed significantly improved strength, regardless of the combinations of number of sets, weekly frequency, intensity and training duration. From a dose-response perspective, the meta-regression suggested that the training duration (between 8 and 52 weeks) was the only variable significantly affecting strength gains: the longer the duration of intervention programs, the greater the strength gains in the elderly population, regardless of possible combinations in training intensity, frequency, or volume.
In conclusion, many combinations of strength training are beneficial in the elderly population, provided that training duration is sufficient. > From: Silva et al., J Sci Med Sports (2013) (Epub ahead of print). All rights reserved to Elsevier Ltd.
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