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Aging and Disease    2013, Vol. 4 Issue (6) : 351-363     DOI: 10.14336/AD.2013.0400351
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Aging, Functional Capacity and Eccentric Exercise Training
Mandy L. Gault, Mark E.T. Willems
Mandy L. Gault, Mark E.T. Willems, University of Chichester, Department of Sport & Exercise Sciences, College Lane, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 6PE, United Kingdom
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Aging is a multi-factorial process that ultimately induces a decline in our physiological functioning, causing a decreased health-span, quality of life and independence for older adults. Exercise participation is seen as a way to reduce the impact of aging through maintenance of physiological parameters. Eccentric exercise is a model that can be employed with older adults, due to the muscle’s ability to combine high muscle force production with a low energy cost. There may however be a risk of muscle damage before the muscle is able to adapt. The first part of this review describes the process of aging and how it reduces aerobic capacity, muscle strength and therefore functional mobility. The second part highlights eccentric exercise and the associated muscle damage, in addition to the repeated bout effect. The final section reviews eccentric exercise interventions that have been completed by older adults with a focus on the changes in functional mobility. In conclusion, eccentric endurance exercise is a potential training modality that can be applied to older adults for improving muscle strength, aerobic capacity and functional ability. However, further research is needed to assess the effects on aerobic capacity and the ideal prescription for eccentric endurance exercise.

Keywords Eccentric exercise      functional ability      muscle strength      aerobic capacity      muscle damage     
Corresponding Authors: Mandy L. Gault   
Issue Date: 10 December 2013
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Mandy L. Gault
Mark E.T. Willems
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Mandy L. Gault,Mark E.T. Willems. Aging, Functional Capacity and Eccentric Exercise Training[J]. Aging and Disease, 2013, 4(6): 351-363.
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