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Age-related differences of extremity joint torque of healthy Japanese

S. Hisamoto, M. Higuchi, N. Miura

Gerontechnology 2005; 4(1):27-45 doi:


Gravity-compensated extremity joint torque (EJT) values were measured in Japanese men and women without disabilities aged 20 to 79 years old to establish reference values for EJT according to age and to identify age-related differences in muscle strength. Methods 1008 subjects were recruited for this study. EJT values were obtained by isometric “make” tests in the sagittal plane with a hand-held dynamometer (HHD). Results On the whole, the peak age-related changes in each EJT value were in the 30 to 39, 40 to 49, and 50 to 59 years old age groups in both the men and the women. The results revealed significantly lower EJT values in women aged 20 to 29 than in women aged 40 to 49 and/or 50 to 59 (p < 0.05, Dunnett t test, SPSS for Windows) for five joint motions in the upper limbs, i.e., wrist palmar flexion, wrist dorsiflexion, elbow flexion, elbow extension, and shoulder extension, and lower values in the lower limbs, i.e., hip flexion than in women aged 50 to 59 and 60 to 69. However, the men aged 20 to 29 years old did not have any significantly lower EJT values than the older age groups of men. Discussion The results of this study show that younger Japanese women have less muscle strength than older Japanese women, and these results were supported by the age-related differences of grip strength and vertical jump values in the physical fitness standard database of Japanese. This phenomenon is supposed to be attributed to disuse and /or inactivity in Japanese younger women.
Keywords: aging; muscle strength; joint torque; disuse; fitness

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Gerontechnology (ISSN/EISSN 1569-1101 1569-111X) is the official journal of the International Society for Gerontechnology