A1 Journal article (refereed)
Cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness in young adult Finnish men between 2003 and 2015 (2020)

Vaara, J., Santtila, M., Vasankari, T., Fogelholm, M., Mäntysaari, M., Pihlainen, K., Vaara, E., & Kyröläinen, H. (2020). Cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness in young adult Finnish men between 2003 and 2015. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 30(4), 716-724. https://doi.org/10.1111/sms.13619

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Vaara, J.; Santtila, M.; Vasankari, T.; Fogelholm, M.; Mäntysaari, M.; Pihlainen, K.; Vaara, E.; Kyröläinen, H.

Journal or series: Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports

ISSN: 0905-7188

eISSN: 1600-0838

Publication year: 2020

Volume: 30

Issue number: 4

Pages range: 716-724

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/sms.13619

Publication open access: Not open

Publication channel open access:

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/67294


Physical fitness is strongly related to health and may offer valuable information about public health. We investigated trends in physical fitness, leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) and anthropometry of young healthy adult Finnish men in representative population based samples between 2003 and 2015.
Three independent cross-sectional samples of 18-35 year old Finnish men were assessed in 2003 (n=889), 2008 (n=803) and 2015 (n=690). Cardiorespiratory (VO2 max) and muscular fitness (1-min sit-ups and push-ups), body mass and height and were measured. Self-reported LTPA was assessed.
After adjusting for age, education, and smoking, cardiorespiratory fitness was higher in 2003 (mean: 43.5, 95%CI: 42.9-44.1 ml/kg/min) compared to 2008 (41.3, 95%CI: 40.7-41.9 ml/kg/min) and 2015 (40.6, 95%CI: 40.0-41.2 ml/kg/min) (p<0.001), whereas no difference was observed between 2008 and 2015. The lowest values in muscular fitness were observed in 2003, while no clear trends were further noticed. The adjusted BMI was higher in 2008 (25.1, 95%CI: 24.9-25.4) and 2015 (25.3, 95%CI: 25.3, 95%CI: 25.0-25.6) compared to 2003 (24.5, 95%CI: 24.3-24.8) (p<0.005). In 2015, a higher proportion of individuals exercised at least 4 times per week compared to 2003 and 2008 (p<0.05).
The decrease of cardiorespiratory fitness that took place between 2003 and 2008 plateaued after 2008. The plateau is in accordance with the previously observed trend of 5-10 years younger Finnish men. Moreover, muscular fitness was for the most part higher in 2008 and 2015 compared to 2003. Efforts directed to promote regular physical activity and improve physical fitness are needed.

Keywords: young adults; men; physical fitness; muscle fitness; body mass index

Free keywords: body mass index; leisure-time physical activity; muscular endurance; physical fitness; secular trends

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2020

JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2021-07-07 at 21:37