This paper reports on fitness changes in sedentary, obese (M BMI = 32.0 kg/m2), 60- to 70-year-old women following 4 months of exercise-based intervention. One hundred eighty-two women were randomly assigned to the following groups: health and fitness education (ED) (n = 70), health and fitness education combined with aerobic training (EX) (n = 76), and control (CO) (n = 36). Pre- and postintervention assessments included predicted VO2max, body composition, resting blood pressure, muscular strength, and flexibility. Significant improvements in aerobic power (31.9%, p < .001), percent body fat (−5.4%, p < .05), and dominant hand-grip strength (4.1%, p < .001) were found in EX compared to ED and CO. Also observed was a significant improvement in flexibility for both EX (13.8%) and ED (12.5%, p < .01) compared to CO. Ninety percent (n = 164) of the women adhered to the program. Program factors contributing to adherence are discussed.
Patricia A. Gillett, Andrea T. White and Michael S. Caserta
Andrea T. White, C. Steven Fehlauer, Rita Hanover, Stephen C. Johnson and Robert E. Dustman
Older individuals arc more likely than younger adults to exhibit symptoms of exercise intolerance at high work rates. The risks of maximal exercise in older adults increase proportionally as the number of health difficulties increase. In this study, the effects of health status, age, and gender on older adults’ ability to attain V̇O2max are examined. Sedentary volunteers (60 women, 45 men), mean age 67 ± 5 years (range 57-78 years), participated in graded maximal exercise tests on a combined arm and leg cycle ergometer. Subjects were classified into three groups based on test termination reason: attainment of V̇O2max (MAX), symptom-limited (SX), or EKG-limited (EKG). Sixty percent of men and 40% of women were classified as MAX, while 48% of women and 27% of men were characterized as SX. Thirteen percent of men and 12% of women had EKG-limited exercise tests. Those in the EKG group reported significantly more diagnoses than subjects in the MAX group (2.7 vs. 1.4. p < .05). The number of medications reported and age of the subjects did not differ across test termination categories.
Heather Anne Hayes, Nikelle Hunsaker, Sydney Y. Schaefer, Barry Shultz, Thomas Schenkenberg, Lara A. Boyd, Andrea T. White, Kenneth B. Foreman, Philip Dyer, Rebecca Maletsky and Leland E. Dibble
Deficits in sequence-specific learning (SSL) may be a product of Parkinson’s disease (PD) but this deficit could also be related to dopamine replacement. The purpose of this study was to determine whether dopamine replacement affected acquisition and retention of a standing Continuous Tracking Task in individuals with PD. SSL (difference between random/repeated Root Mean Square Error across trials) was calculated over 2 days of practice and 1 day of retention for 4 groups; 10 healthy young (HY), 10 healthy elders, 10 individuals with PD on, 9 individuals with PD off their usual dosage of dopamine replacement. Improvements in acquisition were observed for all groups; however, only the HY demonstrated retention. Therefore, age appeared to have the largest effect on SSL with no significant effect of medication. Additional research is needed to understand the influence of factors such as practice amount, task difficulty, and dopamine replacement status on SSL deficits during postural tasks.