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Age Ageing. 1989 Sep;18(5):327-32.

Factors affecting walking speed of elderly people.

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Department of Health Care of the Elderly, University of Nottingham Medical School, Queen's Medical Centre.


Associations between walking speed and other variables have been investigated in a group of 67 women and 58 men aged between 65 and 90 years and living independently. In men, walking speed was related positively to calf strength, step-score (a measure of customary physical activity), hours spent in active leisure, height and weight, and negatively to age and the presence of health problems. In women, the relations were the same, with the exception of weight, and reported leg pain was negatively associated with walking speed. Multiple regression analysis showed that in men 44% of the variance in walking speed was accounted for by height, calf strength and the presence of health problems, and that in women 42% of the variance was accounted for by height, calf strength, step-score and the presence of leg pain limiting mobility. The significance of these findings to maintenance and improvement of walking speed in the elderly is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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