The Intensity of Chair-Assisted Exercises in Cognitively Healthy Older Adults

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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Introduction:

The American College of Sports Medicine prescribes regular performance of at least moderate-intensity physical activity for healthy aging. This study examined whether 1 session of 30 min of chair-assisted exercises for the elderly meets this intensity criterion.

Method:

This cross-sectional study included 47 cognitively healthy volunteers (mean age 84 years). During the performance of 30 min of chair-assisted exercises the authors determined oxygen uptake (VO2), carbon dioxide production, heart rate (HR), and rating of perceived exertion (RPE). These measures were expressed as a percentage of the estimated maximal VO2 (VO2max) and the estimated maximal HR (HRmax) and estimated as metabolic equivalent units (METs).

Results:

Participants performed chair-assisted exercises at 61.0% ± 14.7% of VO2max, 67.6% ± 11.3% HRmax, 3.9 ± 0.9 METs, and 13.1 ± 2.1 RPE.

Conclusions:

The intensity of these chair-assisted exercises is at least moderate for older adults, which is necessary for healthy aging.

Volkers, Eggermont, and Scherder are with the Dept of Clinical Neuropsychology, and van Dijk and Hollander, the Faculty of Human Movement Sciences, VU University, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.