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  1. Yang, Ya-Ping PhD, RN
  2. Lin, Hsiu-Ching PhD, OT
  3. Chen, Kuei-Min PhD, RN, FAAN


Background: Using multiple interventions can increase muscle strength in older adults. A functional fitness test is a useful instrument to identify the effectiveness of physical functioning among older adults. However, the results in previous studies with regard to improvements in their physical function are inconsistent.


Aim: To synthesize the intensity and interval of the effective interventions on physical functioning in community-dwelling older adults.


Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis on the related literature was conducted. The databases searched were PubMed, EBSCO, and Cochrane Trials. Papers published from January 1, 2013, to December 31, 2017, were subjected to a computerized search. The inclusion criteria were that the randomized controlled trials examined a healthy and community-dwelling older adult population, and the instrument used to evaluate functional fitness was based on "functional fitness" or "senior fitness." Two reviewers independently assessed the methodological quality of each trial, including study participants, allocation, blinding, data analysis, duration of follow-up and loss to follow-up, intervention, inclusion criteria, outcome measurements, and other biases.


Results: Among the 218 trials, only 5 randomized control trials were synthesized in this systematic review. These works examined the effects of the intensity, interval, and duration of intervention programs based on elastic band exercise, aerobic training and combined aerobic and resistance training, Tai Chi with TheraBand resistance exercise, and Tai Chi and Thai Yoga exercise.


Conclusions: A 1-hour intervention program, including 10 to 15 minutes of warm-up, 30 to 40 minutes of main exercise, and 5 to 10 minutes of cool-down stages, for 2 to 3 sessions per week, and continuing for 12 to 16 weeks, was the effect intervention for community-dwelling healthy older adults to enhance their upper body strength, lower body flexibility, and agility balance.