Relationship between performance-based and laboratory tests for lower-limb muscle strength and power assessment in healthy older women

Forte, R. and Macaluso, A. (2008) Relationship between performance-based and laboratory tests for lower-limb muscle strength and power assessment in healthy older women. Journal of Sports Sciences, 26 (13). pp. 1431-1436. ISSN 0264-0414

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Abstract

The aim of the study was to assess the relationship between performance-based and laboratory tests for muscular strength and power assessment in older women. Thirty-two women aged 68.8 ± 2.8 years were recruited. All participants were asessed for: (a) two performance-based tests - the box-stepping test (mean 296 ± 51 J) and two-revolution maximum test (mean 7.1 ± 2 kg) performed while pedalling on a cycle ergometer; and (b) muscular function tests - maximal instantaneous peak power jumping on a force platform (mean 1528 ± 279 W); maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) during knee extension (mean 601 ± 571 N) and leg press (mean 626 ± 126 N), and leg press power (mean 483 ± 98 W) on a dynamometer. Using univariate analysis, performance-based tests were compared with laboratory muscle strength and power measurements. Muscle power correlated most strongly with the performance-based tests for both jumping and leg press power (r-values between 0.67 and 0.75; P < 0.01). The correlation with muscle strength measures ranged between 0.48 and 0.61 (P < 0.01). The proposed tests may have particular relevance in geriatric and rehabilitation environments as they represent an easy, practical, and inexpensive alternative for the assessment of muscular strength and power.