Community-Based Training–Detraining Intervention in Older Women: A Five-Year Follow-Up Study

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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This five-year follow-up nonrandomized controlled study evaluated community-based training and detraining on body composition and functional ability in older women. Forty-two volunteers (64.3 ± 5.1 years) were divided into four groups: aerobic training, strength training, combined aerobic and strength, and control. Body composition and physical fitness were measured at baseline, after nine months of training and after three months of detraining every year. After five years of training, body fat decreased, and fat free mass, strength, and chair test performance increased (p < .05) in all training groups. Training-induced favorable adaptations were reversed during detraining but, eventually, training groups presented better values than the control group even after detraining. Thus, nine months of annual training, during a five-year period, induced favorable adaptations on body composition, muscular strength, and functional ability in older women. Three months of detraining, however, changed the favorable adaptations and underlined the need for uninterrupted exercise throughout life.

Douda, Kosmidou, Smilios, Volaklis, and Tokmakidis are with the Department of Physical Education & Sports Science, Democritus University of Thrace, Komotini, Greece.

Address author correspondence to Savvas P. Tokmakidis at stokmaki@phyed.duth.gr.