Int J Sports Med 2004; 25(7): 539-546
DOI: 10.1055/s-2004-820948
Training & Testing

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Effects of Brisk Walking on Static and Dynamic Balance, Locomotion, Body Composition, and Aerobic Capacity in Ageing Healthy Active Men

T. Paillard1 , 2 , C. Lafont2 , M. C. Costes-Salon2 , D. Rivière3 , P. Dupui1
  • 1Department of Physiology, School of Medicine,Toulouse, France
  • 2Department of Gerontology and Internal Medicine, Purpan University Hospital, Hôpital La Grave-Casselardit, Pavillon Junod, Toulouse, France
  • 3Departement for Exploration of Respiratory Function and Sports Medicine, Purpan, Toulouse, France
Further Information

Publication History

Accepted after revision: October 20, 2003

Publication Date:
24 May 2004 (online)


This work analyses the short-term physiological and neurophysiological effects of a brisk walking programme in ageing, healthy, active men. Twenty-one men 63 to 72 years of age were recruited and separated into 2 groups. One group performed a walking programme (WP) (n = 11) and another served as control (C) group (n = 10). The walking programme lasted for twelve weeks and included five sessions per week. Several parameters were assessed before and after the programme for the WP group. The same tests were performed (separated by twelve weeks) in group C. During each assessment, the subjects were put through static and dynamic balance tests, spatio-temporal gait analysis, body composition measurements and determination of aerobic capacity and bone mineral density. The statistic analysis showed a significant improvement in dynamic balance performance, especially in lateral sway when the subjects kept their eyes open, an increase of VO2 max and loss of fat mass in the WP group. However, no alterations appeared in spatiotemporal gait characteristics, static balance performance, lean mass or bone mineral density (total body and hip). According to these results, this walking programme may have positive effects on preventing ageing subjects from falling.


Thierry Paillard

Department of Physiology · School of Medicine

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