Eccentric Strength Training Prescription for Older Adults


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Abstract

This article describes changes in muscle fiber size and type, motor unit remodeling, altered recruitment patterns, and a sedentary lifestyle, which are often causes of muscle weakness in many aging adults. While some age-related losses of function appear unavoidable, it is also apparent that older persons can capitalize on their relatively higher eccentric strength reserve and use it advantageously in training protocols. Appropriate exercise prescription, such as gradual progression of intensity, an emphasis regarding safe body mechanics and posture, and frequent feedback on improvements, will help to optimize gains during resistance training, leading to increased maximal strength and endurance capacity for activities of leisure and daily living.

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