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Marijke J.M. Chin A Paw, Nynke de Jong, Martin Stevens, Petrus Bult and Evert G. Schouten

The article describes the design and preliminary evaluation of a 17-week, twice-weekly, comprehensive, progressive exercise program for frail elderly adults. The main objective was to maintain or improve mobility and performance of daily activities essential for independent functioning. Strength, speed, endurance, flexibility, and coordination were trained by walking, kneeling, and chair stands, performed in the context of motor behavior such as games and daily activities. The acceptability of the exercise program was evaluated in a population of community-dwelling, frail older adults (mean age 77.6 ± 5.4 years). Eighty-one percent completed the program. Program appreciation and attendance were high. Seventy-three percent reported wanting to continue participating if possible—although most only once a week. At follow-up (1–1.5 years afterward) 30% were still participating in an exercise program. The exercise program was enjoyed and accepted by a population of frail, previously sedentary elderly adults. Widespread implementation of this program could increase physical activity among frail older adults.

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Tim Takken, Nynke de Jong and on behalf of the Dutch Physical Activity Report Card Study Group