The Gallon-Jug Shelf-Transfer Test: An Instrument to Evaluate Deteriorating Function in Older Adults

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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This study examined the validity, reliability, and discriminatory capacity of the gallon-jug shelf-transfer (GJST) test. Six hundred fifty-three independent-living older adults (463 women age 72.9 ± 7.0 years, 190 men age 74.3 ± 6.7 years) participated. Participants moved five 1-gallon jugs (≈3.9 kg) from a knee-high to a shoulder-high shelf as quickly as possible. The GJST showed an exponential performance decline with age, and there were significant correlations between the GJST and common functional tests (p < .001). High within-day and between-days reliability was detected. The test also detected differences resulting from training status (p < .01) and training protocols (p < .05). The GJST is a valid, reliable, inexpensive, safe, and easily administered clinical test for identifying physically vulnerable elders who could benefit from interventions such as exercise to improve their physical capacities and maintain independence.

Signorile, Stanziano, Smith, and Roos are with the Dept. of Exercise and Sport Sciences, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33124. Sandler and Bamel are with StrengthPro, Inc., Las Vegas, NV 89113. Signorile, Ma, Roos, and Sandals are with the Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Miami, FL.