Matthew S. Stone1, Michelle Gray1, Emily Janssen1,2 1University of Arkansas – Human Performance Laboratory; Office for Studies on Aging, Fayetteville, Arkansas; 2University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas

Muscular power declines 6-10% per decade throughout life. It is unknown, however, when the decrease is most apparent. Therefore, it’s important to examine the difference in power amongst different age cohorts. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to examine the difference in power output measures among adults over the age of 18 years, separated into age decade cohorts (18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, and 80-89 years). METHODS: A total of 160 men and women participated in the study (40.6 ± 20.1 years; 71.1 ± 14.0 kg), spanning in age from 18-86 years. Power was assessed using the Tendo power analyzer during a sit-to-stand (STS) task. Participants sat on a standard height (0.47 m) chair, arms crossed over their chest and performed five separate STS trials, rising from a seated to full standing position as quickly as possible; one-minute rest periods provided between each trial. The Tendo was positioned on the floor in alignment with the participant’s heel and the Kevlar string attached to the participant’s hip with a carabineer clip and belt. With each STS task, peak (PPOW) and average (APOW) power, as well as peak (PVEL) and average (AVEL) velocity were recorded in watts (W) and meters per second (m/s), respectively. PPOW, APOW, PVEL, and AVEL were recorded for each stand, with the average taken. RESULTS: One-way ANOVA analysis indicated a significant difference between groups for PPOW, APOW, PVEL, and AVEL measures (p < .05). Younger subjects produced significantly greater PPOW and APOW than individuals in age cohorts over 40 years (p < .05). When assessing PVEL and AVEL, the younger age cohorts produced significantly greater values than the older age cohorts (p < .05). CONCLUSION: Findings indicate muscular power to be significantly greater among younger cohorts (≤ 40 years), as compared to older cohorts (> 40 years); however, among older cohorts, there was no significant decline in power. This gives an indication that decline in muscular power may occur around the age of 40, which is when the decline becomes less apparent. Based on findings, preservation of muscular power is necessary before 40 years of age.

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