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Study: Exercise Helps Lower Fitness Age 研究顯示鍛煉幫助減緩衰老

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We all know exercise can help build a foundation for healthy living. But can it make you younger? According to a new study of senior athletes, exercising can lower your fitness age — a measure of how well your body works. June Soh has more.
We all know exercise can help build a foundation for healthy living. But can it make you younger? According to a new study of senior athletes, exercising can lower your fitness age — a measure of how well your body works. June Soh has more.

Every morning, Tony Diamond goes to a local park for an hour of fast walking. Then he runs for another hour. He also goes to a gym two or three times a week for muscle training. The retired navy captain won three medals at the 2015 National Senior Games in the road race and the race walk in his age group, 85 to 89.

"My current age is 86 years old and my fitness age is 44,' he says. "I think I have such a good number because I did a lot of exercise during my life. I've been exercising since I was a little boy."

Helen White, a versatile athlete who won a silver medal in pickleball at the 2013 National Senior Games, plays basketball and also teaches the sport to senior groups.

"I'm 62 years old and my fitness result showed that I was 32 years,' she says. "It really wasn't until I turned to 50 that I decided to become much more serious and focused about play, and just making sure it is daily part of my life."

White and Diamond are among some 5,000 competitors in the National Senior Games, a biennial competition for athletes over 50 that was recently held in Minnesota, who took part in the study on fitness age.

The research, led by Dr. Pamela Peeke of the University of Maryland in coordination with Dr. Ulrik Wisloff of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, who developed a fitness calculator, found that older athletes' fitness age is more than 20 years younger than their chronological age.

"You simply input very straightforward data,' said Peeke, explaining how the study was conducted. 'We ask you questions: your age, height, weight, how much you work out, your waist size, heart rate, blood pressure, and it goes on. Then you press a button, you find out what your actual fitness age is.

"This kind of testing, an assessment of fitness age, is actually very valid and it helps us understand the benefits of being fit and healthy," she added, explaining that anyone can use the online calculator for free.

Peeke, a board member of the organization that runs the National Senior Games, says many of the competitors didn't start training until later in life. Consisting of a variety of sports - from track and field to triathlon - the games' average competitor is 68, although their average fitness age is 43.

'It doesn't matter how old you are,' she said. 'Twenty, 25, 30 ... who cares, all of us can lower our fitness age by staying right on top of it, taking good care of ourselves, especially physical activity.'

Peeke says it is never too early or too late to start reaping the benefits of exercise.

人人都知道鍛煉有助健康。不過鍛煉能讓你變得更年輕嗎?根據對老年運動員進行的一項新研究,鍛煉可以減低你的"健康年齡"(fitness age),這是衡量你的身體到底有多好的指標。對最近參加在美國明尼蘇達州舉行的全國老年運動會(National Senior Games)的運動員進行的研究顯示,他們的"健康年齡"比同齡人年輕了20多歲!顯然,這會鼓舞更多的人走出戶外鍛煉身體。

每天早晨,托尼·戴蒙德都到當地公園快走一個小時,然后再跑步一個小時。他每星期還去健身房兩三次,鍛煉肌肉。這位退役海軍上校在2015年全國老年運動會上拿下了85到89年齡組公路賽跑和競走項目的三面金牌。

他說,"我的實際年齡是86歲,而'健康年齡'是44歲。我覺得,我的數字這么好是因為我一輩子都積極鍛煉。我還是小孩子的時候就開始鍛煉了。"

海倫·懷特打籃球,還教老年人運動。這位才能多樣的運動員在2013年全國老年運動會贏得了匹克球的銀牌。

懷特說,"我的實際年齡是62歲,我的健康測試結果顯示我是32歲。"

懷特和戴蒙德以及其他大約5000名老年運動會參賽者參加了"健康年齡"研究。馬里蘭大學助理教授帕米拉·皮克與制定了"健康年齡計算器"的挪威科技大學的烏爾麗克·威斯洛夫一道進行了這項研究。

皮克說,"你只需要輸入簡單明了的數據。我們的問題是:你的年齡、身高、體重、鍛煉程度、腰圍、心率、血壓,等等。然后,你按個鍵,就能發現你實際的'健康年齡'是多少。"

任何人都能免費使用網上的計算器。

皮克說,"這種測試,也就是對'健康年齡'的評估,實際上非常有效,幫助我們理解身體健康帶來的好處。"

全國老年運動會是每兩年舉行的賽事,參加者年齡在50歲以上,從田徑到鐵人三項,包括多項運動。今年運動會的平均參賽年齡是68歲,平均"健康年齡"是43歲。

皮克在策劃這項運動會的組織擔任董事會成員。她說,很多參賽者是到了一定年紀時才開始鍛煉的。

老年運動員懷特說,"我其實是到了50歲才決定更認真投入打球并把它作為我日常生活的一部分。"

皮克說,"無論你年紀如何,20歲、25歲、30歲,有什么關系?我們誰都可以降低自己的'健康年齡',方式是注意健康,照顧好自己,特別要保持體力活動。"

皮克說,鍛煉一定會有好處,什么時候開始都不會太早或太晚。

網友的學習評論(1條):
Very good, exercise is very important for human being health. At least, taking 30 muniutes per day to exercise. Come on.
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