A1 Journal article (refereed)
Long-term strength and balance training in prevention of decline in muscle strength and mobility in older adults (2020)

Aartolahti, E., Lönnroos, E., Hartikainen, S., & Häkkinen, A. (2020). Long-term strength and balance training in prevention of decline in muscle strength and mobility in older adults. Aging Clinical and Experimental Research, 32(1), 59-66. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40520-019-01155-0

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsAartolahti, Eeva; Lönnroos, Eija; Hartikainen, Sirpa; Häkkinen, Arja

Journal or seriesAging Clinical and Experimental Research



Publication year2020


Issue number1

Pages range59-66

PublisherEditrice Kurtis

Publication countryItaly

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessPartially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/65693


Background. Reductions in muscle strength and poor balance may lead to mobility limitations in older age.

Aims. We assessed the effects of long-term once-weekly strength and balance training (SBT) on muscle strength and physical functioning in a community-based sample of older adults.

Methods. 182 individuals [130 women and 52 men, mean age 80 (SD ± 3.9) years] underwent supervised SBT as part of the Geriatric Multidisciplinary Strategy for the Good Care of the Elderly study. Training was offered once a week for 2.3 years. Isometric knee extension and flexion strength, chair rise, maximal walking speed, timed up and go (TUG) and Berg Balance Scale (BBS) were measured at baseline, after 2-year training and at post intervention follow-up. A linear mixed model was used to examine the change in physical functioning over time.

Results. During the intervention, both women (2.5 s, p < 0.001) and men (1.4 s, p = 0.013) improved their chair rise capacity. Women’s knee extension and flexion strength improved by 14.1 N (p = 0.003) and 16.3 N (p < 0.001), respectively. Their maximal walking speed also improved by 0.08 m/s (p < 0.001). In men, no changes in muscle strength or walking speed occurred during training or follow-up. No changes in BBS and TUG were observed at the end of the intervention, but decrease in BBS was observed at post-intervention follow-up in men.

Conclusions. In community-dwelling older adults with variety in health and functioning supervised strength and balance training once a week may help to prevent age-related decline in mobility and muscle strength.

Keywordsstrength trainingbalance trainingmuscle strengthability to moveolder peoplemobilityelderly

Free keywordsstrenght; muscle strenght

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2020

JUFO rating1

Last updated on 2024-03-04 at 21:36