Sarcopenia Is Negatively Related to High Gravitational Impacts Achieved from Day-to-day Physical Activity

April Hartley*, Celia L. Gregson, Kimberly Hannam, Kevin C. Deere, Emma M. Clark, Jon H. Tobias

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
253 Downloads (Pure)



Sarcopenia has been associated with reduced physical activity (PA). We aimed to determine if sarcopenia, and specific components of muscle size, function and physical performance, are associated with high impacts achieved during habitual PA, as these are related to bone strength in community-dwelling older women.


Participants were older women from the Cohort of Skeletal Health in Bristol and Avon. We defined sarcopenia using the EWGSOP criteria. Lower limb peak muscle power and force were assessed using Jumping Mechanography (JM). High vertical impacts were assessed by tri-axial accelerometry (at least 1.5g above gravity). Cross-sectional associations were analysed by linear regression, adjusting for age, height and weight (or fat mass for models including appendicular lean mass index), comorbidities, smoking, alcohol and Index of Multiple Deprivation.


Our analyses included 380 participants, with mean age 76.7 (SD 3.0) years; 242 (64%) also completed JM. In age-adjusted analysis, a negative relationship was observed between severity of sarcopenia and high, but not medium or low, impacts (p=0.03 for trend). Regarding components of sarcopenia underlying this relationship, multivariable analyses revealed that gait speed [β 1.47(95% CI 1.14,1.89), [β-1] reflects the proportionate increase in high impacts per SD increase in exposure] and peak force [1.40(1.07,1.84)] were independently associated with high impacts.


Older women with sarcopenia experienced fewer bone-strengthening high impacts than those with pre-sarcopenia or without sarcopenia. To increase bone strengthening activity in older women, interventions need to improve both lower limb muscle force and walking speed.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberglx223
Pages (from-to)652-659
Number of pages8
JournalJournals of Gerontology, Series A
Issue number5
Early online date22 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2018


  • Accelerometer
  • G-force
  • Muscle function
  • Physical capability


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