Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences Large Type Edition
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Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, Vol 52, Issue 2 B125-B131, Copyright © 1997 by The Gerontological Society of America


JOURNAL ARTICLE

Eccentric peak torque of the plantar and dorsiflexors is maintained in older women

MM Porter, AA Vandervoort and JF Kramer
Department of Physical Therapy and Faculty of Kinesiology, University of Western Ontario, Canada.

Although a relative preservation of eccentric (ECC) strength with age has been reported previously, this phenomenon has not been studied in lower leg muscles. Concentric (CONC) and ECC plantar (PF) and dorsiflexion (DF) in healthy active older women (OW; n = 16, age = 67 +/- 4 years) and younger women (YW; n = 16, age = 27 +/- 4 years) were studied. Passive resistive torque of the plantar flexors and average rate of torque development (RTD) for both DF and PF were also measured. The OW had CONC peak torques that were 74% and 89% of the YW for PF and DF, whereas ECC peak torques were 97% and 100% of the YW. ECC torque patterns were almost identical for both groups, but there were significant differences for passive resistive torque (OW > YW; p < .01) and CONC RTD (OW < YW; p < .05). While increased passive resistive torque did not prove to be influential in maintaining ECC strength with age, it had a negative effect on CONC DF function.


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