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Effect of Exercise Cognitive Combined Training on Physical Function in Cognitively Healthy Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Qiuhong Li, Bingyan Gong, Yiran Zhao, and Chao Wu

This study aimed to evaluate the effects of exercise cognitive combined training (ECCT) compared with non-ECCT on physical function in cognitively healthy older adults. Databases were searched for randomized controlled trials from inception to December 2, 2021, and 22 studies (1,091 participants, M age = 74.90) were included in the meta-review. The Cochrane Risk of Bias and Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation tools were used for quality assessments. ECCT improved gait speed (mean difference: 0.06 m/s, 95% CI [confidence interval] [0.02, 0.11]; 446 participants, 11 studies) and balance (standardized mean difference: 0.38, 95% CI [0.14, 0.61]; 292 participants, seven studies). Simultaneous ECCT, but not nonsimultaneous ECCT, improved gait speed (mean difference: 0.11 m/s, 95% CI [0.07, 0.15]), balance (standardized mean difference: 0.40, 95% CI [0.16, 0.64]), and functional mobility (mean difference: −0.85 s, 95% CI [−1.63, −0.07]; 327 participants, nine studies). Future research should focus on the duration and form of ECCT intervention optimal for improving the functional activities of older individuals.

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The Impact of COVID-19 Restrictions on Perceived Health and Well-Being of Active Australian Older Adults

Rochelle Eime, Jack Harvey, Melanie Charity, Sam Elliott, Murray Drummond, Aurelie Pankowiak, and Hans Westerbeek

The aim of this study was to determine the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on older adults’ perceived health and well-being according to different types of participation in sport and physical activity by gender and region. A survey was implemented during the first COVID-19 lockdown in Australia (June 2020) and information collected on demographics, sport and physical activity patterns pre-COVID-19, and health and well-being outcomes during lockdown and compared to 1 year earlier. During COVID-19 lockdown, older adults who participated in both club sport and informal activities had significantly better general health, physical health, and resilience than those who participated solely in a single setting. Those participating in both team and individual activities reported better general well-being. Older adults who were active in a range of settings and modes had improved health and well-being. Social support is especially important for older adults to become and remain active.

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Physically Constructed and Socially Shaped: Sociomaterial Environment and Walking for Transportation in Later Life

Yang Li

The predictive power of three intersecting environmental dimensions (built structures, social infrastructure, and social capital) on late-life walking was investigated, conceptually based on the ecological framework of place, which posits that a living environment is simultaneously a physical place, a social place, and a set of social bonds. Multilevel models were used to examine the extent to which environments, defined as interactions of the social and material environmental dimensions, reliably predicted walking for transportation among U.S. adults aged 60 years or older in the 2015 National Health Interview Survey (n = 11,180). Random intercepts representing 221 environments showed an intraclass correlation of 21%, indicating high levels of between-environment variance in walking. Social infrastructure had the highest predictive power for walking, followed by material structures and social capital. Synergistic interventions that incorporate the intersecting nature of the sociomaterial environment may be most effective in promoting physical activity in later life.

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Protein Supplementation for Strength and Functionality in Older Adults: Is There Still Any Doubt? A Brief Update Review

Júlio Benvenutti Bueno de Camargo and Alexandre Ferraz de Oliveira

It is widely known that the aging process induces relevant impairments on both muscle morphology and function. In this sense, resistance training alongside proper protein intake are important strategies to mitigate the sarcopenia process in older individuals. However, adding protein supplementation (PS) to resistance training interventions for enhancing muscle strength and functional performance has shown mixed results in this population. Therefore, the present study aimed to review the most recent evidence regarding PS and its effects on muscle strength and functional parameters of older adults. In addition, the effect size of each individual study (post–pre intervention) was also calculated to provide further clinical relevance on the topic. The results of the studies included do not seem to support PS for healthy older adults with proper protein intake. However, further studies with other sample characteristics (very old, frail, obese, and inadequate protein consumption) must be carried out to better understand the effects of PS in an older population.

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Depression, Anxiety, and Physical Activity in Older Adults With Multiple Sclerosis

Rachel E. Bollaert, C. Danielle Jones, Petra Silic, and Robert W. Motl

This study examined levels of depression and anxiety symptoms (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale scores), and self-reported (Godin Leisure-Time Exercise Questionnaire), and accelerometer-measured physical activity in older adults with multiple sclerosis (n = 40) compared with age- and sex-matched healthy controls (n = 40). We observed differences in depression, anxiety, and physical activity between groups and further observed that minutes/day of moderate to vigorous physical activity partially accounted for group differences in depression scores. We provide preliminary support for research examining approaches for increasing moderate to vigorous physical activity and possibly reducing depression symptoms in older adults with multiple sclerosis.

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Volume 30 (2022): Issue 4 (Aug 2022)

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An Individualized Coach Development Program for Older Adult Player-Coaches in a Masters Football League in Colombia

Catalina Belalcazar, Tarcisio Hernández Nariño, and Bettina Callary

Coaches contribute toward helping older adults achieve quality sport experiences, but there are few resources grounded in adult-oriented psychosocial approaches from which they can learn. The purpose of this Participatory Action Research study was to facilitate a personalized professional development program for a Colombian football (soccer) league of older adult men using an evidence-based self-assessment tool for Masters coaches. Data were collected from 23 coaches, who were also players in the league, via interviews, workshops, and observations. Data were analyzed via reflective thematic analysis that aimed to understand coaches’ perceptions of how they learned through the workshops and how they implemented what they learned into their coaching. Findings indicate that personalized professional development enabled better structured leadership in the league, creating Quality Masters Sport Experiences.

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Promoting Active Aging Through Sports Participation: A Qualitative Exploration of Serious Leisure Among Older Chinese Adults

Wenting Zhou, Yajun Qiu, and Haibo Tian

China’s population of older individuals reached 264.02 million in 2020, an increase of 5.44% from 2010. This study explores how participation in serious leisure sports, which have enduring benefits for older adults, contributes to active aging. In-depth interviews were conducted with 15 older participants aged 60–78 years who had participated in a leisure sport activity for 1 year or longer. A thematic analysis was conducted, and four themes emerged: body improvements, positive emotions, optimistic life attitudes, and social interactions. Older adults who participate in serious leisure sports are empowered via practice and learning opportunities to engage with their aging bodies, pursue psychological benefits, and jointly maintain leisure groups. The findings of this study contribute to our understanding of the “rights-based” approach to active aging and allow us to identify serious leisure sports as an active way for older adults to improve their quality of life.

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Incidence and Predictors of Physical Inactivity Among Malaysian Community-Dwelling Older Persons

Azianah Mohamad Ibrahim, Devinder Kaur Ajit Singh, Sumaiyah Mat, Arimi Fitri Mat Ludin, and Suzana Shahar

The aim of this study was to determine the incidence of physical inactivity and identify the predictors for low physical activity among community-dwelling older persons living in Malaysia in 3 years follow-up. In this prospective study, physical activity levels were measured using the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly. The arbitrary cutoff for Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly in this study was ≤70.9 for low and >141 for high physical activity levels. Out of the 955 physically active participants at baseline, 555 of them (mean [SD] age 68.82 [4.92] years) were successfully followed up to 3 years. Cumulative incidence of being physically inactive was 21% with rate of 7 per 100 person-years. It was found that being older (<.001), from Malay ethnic group (<.05), smokers (<.01), having lower gait speed (<.001), and lower cognitive status (<.05) were predictors for physical inactivity among Malaysian community-dwelling older persons in 3 years follow-up. These factors should be taken into consideration when planning for intervention and promotion strategies to increase physical activity levels among Malaysian older persons.

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Effect of the Level of Physical Activity on Prefrontal Cortex Hemodynamics in Older Adults During Single- and Dual-Task Walking

Charles Germain, Alexandra Perrot, Christophe Tomasino, Julien Bonnal, Canan Ozsancak, Pascal Auzou, and Fabrice Prieur

The present study aimed to examine the impact of the level of physical activity on prefrontal cortex activation in older adults during single- and dual-task walking. Thirty physically inactive and 36 active older adults (60–85 years old) performed six 2-min tasks on a treadmill: two static cognitive tasks, two single-task walking tests, and two dual-task walking tests. Hemodynamics at the level of the prefrontal cortex were measured continuously using functional near-infrared spectroscopy to evaluate cortical activation. The perceived difficulty of the task, cognitive performance, and gait parameters were also measured. During the walking tasks, the level of prefrontal cortex activation, the perceived difficulty of the task, cognitive performance, and motor parameters were not significantly different between active and inactive older adults. This unchanged activation with physical activity was likely the consequence of a similar motor and cognitive load and cardiorespiratory fitness in both active and inactive older adults.