Hand-Grip Strength: Normative Reference Values and Equations for Individuals 18 to 85 Years of Age Residing in the United States

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Abstract

• BACKGROUND: Hand-grip strength is an indicator of overall strength and a predictor of important outcomes. Up-to-date, population-specific reference values for measurements of grip strength are needed to properly interpret strength outcomes.

• OBJECTIVES: To provide population-based grip-strength reference values and equations for US residents 18 to 85 years of age.

• METHODS: Hand-grip data from 1232 participants 18 to 85 years of age were extracted from the database of the 2011 normative phase of the US National Institutes of Health Toolbox project in this cross-sectional study. Descriptive reference values and equations were derived from the data.

• RESULTS: The authors present grip-strength reference values using summary statistics (mean, standard deviation, and percentile). The mean grip strength ranged from 49.7 kg for the dominant hand of men 25 to 29 years of age to 18.7 kg for the nondominant hand of women 75 to 79 years of age. The researchers also present reference regression equations for the dominant and nondominant sides of men and women. The explanatory variables in the equations are age, height, and weight.

• CONCLUSION: The normative reference values and equations provided in this study may serve as a guide for interpreting grip-strength measurements obtained from tested individuals.

• KEY WORDS:grip, hand, hand strength, NIH Toolbox (health care), norm

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