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Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 1994 Nov;75(11):1213-6.

Isokinetic testing of ankle strength in older adults: assessment of inter-rater reliability and stability of strength over six months.

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  • 1Department of Health Services, University of Washington, Seattle 98195.


The study purposes were (1) to estimate the inter-rater reliability of isokinetic strength tests at the ankle in older adults (test-retest interval of three to 7 days), and to determine whether more experienced examiners were more reliable; and (2) to estimate 6 month stability of strength tests. Inter-rater reliability was high for plantar flexion and dorsiflexion tests where average strength was more than about 10 Newton-meters (Nm) (Pearson R = 0.87-0.95). When average strength was less than 10Nm, reliability was less (R = 0.42-0.75). Experienced examiners (physical therapists) and less experienced examiners (research assistants) were equally reliable. Variability in strength over 6 months was no greater than variability over a few days. We conclude that isokinetic tests of ankle strength in older adults are highly reliable and stable when examiners are adequately trained and subjects maintain usual physical activity levels.

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