Which is the impact of sedentary behavior on the physical fitness of women older than 50?

Diego Augusto Santos Silva, Braulio Cesar de Alcantara Mendonça, Antonio César Cabral de Oliveira


The purpose of this study was to verify the association between sedentary behavior and physical fitness of women aged 50 and older. A cross-sectional study was carried out with 298 women in this age range (mean, 59.8±7.2 years), divided into an at-risk group (n=103) and a non-risk group (n=195) according to sedentary behavior. Anthropometric variables were collected (body mass [kg], height [cm], triceps skinfold thickness [mm] and waist circumference [cm]), and body fat percentage was measured by bioelectrical impedance. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to compare performance on physical tests in relation to sedentary behavior, adopting a significance level of 5%. Physical activity level was measured and physical fitness tests (flexibility, abdominal resistance, upper body strength, and aerobic fitness) were administered. At-risk women who exhibited sedentary behavior performed worst on upper body strength (12.0±0.7 repetitions) and aerobic fitness (23.3±0.5 ml/kg/min) when compared to those who had no risky behavior (p<0.05). Physical activity can be encouraged in this age group in order to minimize the effects of aging.


Aging; Anthropometry; Physical fitness; Sedentary lifestyle; Women’s health.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5007/1980-0037.2012v14n2p154

The abbreviated title of the journal is Rev. Bras. Cineantropom. Desempenho Hum, which should be used in bibliographies, footnotes and bibliographical references. E-ISSN 1980-0037, impressa ISSN 1415-8426, Florianópolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.