The effects of physical therapists' guidance on improvement in a strength-training program for the frail elderly

J Aging Phys Act. 2005 Jan;13(1):5-22. doi: 10.1123/japa.13.1.5.

Abstract

Elderly participants experiencing difficulty in chair rising and with a maximum knee-extensor torque below 87.5 N . m were randomized to different versions of a strength-training program for the knee-extensors: to a high-guidance group (HG; two group sessions supervised by a physical therapist and one unsupervised home session per week, n = 17), a medium-guidance group (MG; one supervised group session and two unsupervised home sessions per week, n = 16), or a control group (C; no exercise, n = 16). Maximal isometric knee strength increased more in HG than in C (p = .03) and with increasing guidance (p = .03). The effect was mainly the result of participants with low initial strength. Walking speed increased more for HG than for C (p = .02) and than for MG (p = .06). No statistically significant improvements were seen on other functional tests. In summary, the study shows a trend toward better results with more supervision, but more and larger studies are needed to confirm this.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Frail Elderly*
  • Humans
  • Isometric Contraction / physiology*
  • Knee / physiology*
  • Leg / physiology
  • Male
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology*
  • Patient Compliance
  • Postural Balance / physiology
  • Program Evaluation
  • Walking / physiology
  • Weight Lifting / physiology