This study aimed to investigate whether combination of physical performance tests and demographic data can estimate cognitive impairment in early stage. Participants were 486 community-dwelling older adults (73.7 ± 5.2 years, women 54.5%). Grip strength, 5-m habitual walk, and rapid circle drawing task were used as physical performance tests. The trail making test part A, B, and verbal fluency task were administered to use as indicator of early cognitive impairment. A stepwise multiple regression analysis in each gender was performed. Cognitive function tests were entered as dependent variable, and physical performance tests and demographic data (age, education, and body mass index) were entered as independent variables. In men, coefficient of determination in the trail making test part A, B, Δ trail making test (part B minus part A), and verbal fluency task were 0.21, 0.19, 0.10, and 0.18, respectively. In women, coefficient of determination in the trail making test part A, B, Δ trail making test, and verbal fluency task were 0.14, 0.21, 0.14, and 0.09, respectively. Although combination of performance tests and demographic data depended on cognitive function tests, only rapid circle drawing task were selected in all analysis in this study. These results suggest that rapid circle drawing task, which evaluates hand motor function, would be beneficial to grasp early cognitive impairment, and selecting effective combination of physical performance tests and demographic data is required based oncognitive function tests.
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between ability to control jump height in vertical jump in youth and individual exercise amount in various school-age groups. One hundred twenty subjects participated in the experiment. All the subjects were evaluated for their ability to control jump height in vertical jump in the eye-opened and eye-closed states. We investigated the amount of exercise (exercise period × intensity) of all the subjects in each school-age group (preschool, lower and upper elementary school grades, junior high school, high school, and university [current]) and then examined the relationship of both. The gap between the jumping target values (20%, 40%, 60%, and 80% of the maximum jump height) and generated jumping height based on the degree of subjective effort exerted was treated as the ability to control jump height. For statistical analysis, analysis of covariance was performed using a mixed model. The dependent variable was the gap between the jumping target value and the generated jumping height based on the degree of subjective effort exerted. The independent variables were jumping target value, eye-opened or eye-closed state, sex, maximum jump height, amount of exercise of the subjects in each school-age group, and subject effect. The results of the statistical analysis showed significant F values for the jumping target value, eye-opened or eye-closed state, and the amount of exercise of the subjects in the lower elementary school grades. These results suggest that the amount of exercise in subjects of lower elementary school grades affects their ability to control jump height in vertical jump in youth.
Traditional balance ability tests such as the one-leg stance with eyes closed (C-OLS) test is easy for young people to do, and many achieve an upper time limit. The aim of this study was to examine the distribution and reliability of the one-leg tiptoe stance with eyes closed test (C-OLTS), which is more difficult than C-OLS, as well as the relationship between C-OLS and C-OLTS. Ninety-eight female subjects performed C-OLS (two trials each) and C-OLTS (five trials each), and the time for which the posture was maintained was recorded. In both tests, the recorded time and its logarithmic conversion value were used in analysis because the distribution of both tests was not normal. The difference in C-OLTS scores among the trials was not significant, and the maximal time recorded for the test was 12.52s. The intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC) of C-OLTS was good (ICC = 0.77 ～ 0.88). In addition, the significant correlation coefficient (ρ = 0.46) between C-OLS and C-OLTS was confirmed. C-OLTS has substantial reliability and no ceiling effect. The open relationship of both tests may be influenced by various differences in test characteristics and suggest that affected ability to test performance is a little different between both tests.
Acupuncture stimulation suppresses some proprioceptive reflexes, such as the stretch reflex. On the other hand, the stretch reflex plays a certain role during movements utilizing the stretch-shortening cycle (SSC). This study evaluated the degree to which acupuncture stimulation impacts the ability to perform SSC movements. The subjects were 11 young males who were subjected to low-frequency electroacupuncture (2 Hz, 15 min.) of the triceps surae muscle, randomly selecting between the left and the right side. Immediately before, immediately after, and 1, 24, 48, and 72 hours after, the subjects performed five single-legged rebound jumps (RJ), and we calculated an RJ index (jump height/ground contact time). At the same time, we also measured the range of ankle dorsiflexion, the muscle stiffness of the medial and lateral head gastrocnemius muscles (medial and lateral muscle stiffness), and subjective sensations according to a visual analogue scale (VAS). The measurements were performed bilaterally (stimulated side and non-stimulated side). In any of the measured variables, no interaction was observed between which side was stimulated and the measurement opportunity. We performed Dunnett's method of multiple comparisons for the stimulated side and the non-stimulated side. As a result, on the stimulated side we found a significant decrease immediately before and immediately after stimulation in the RJ index and the medial and lateral muscle stiffness. In addition, we found a similarly significant increase in the sense of discomfort according to a VAS. On the non-stimulated side, we found a similar difference only in the medial muscle stiffness. Consequently, this suggested that the timing of clinical implementation of acupuncture therapy requires consideration.
We examined the effects of two home-based exercise programs (simple-exercise and multiple-exercise) conducted for three months on physical functioning, quality of life and self-efficiency of older Japanese adults. Simple-exercise consisted of squatting and standing on one leg, whereas multiple-exercise composed of squatting, calf raises, leg extensions, step exercises, isometric training of the upper and lower arms among others. Participants were randomly divided into simple-exercise (3 men and 12 women, aged 71.2 ± 2.6 years) and multiple-exercise groups (3 men and 12 women, aged 72.1 ± 2.2 years). Participants were also given biweekly home visit instructions. Participants worked out daily during the home-based exercise program without supervision of the instructor. The 30-second Chair Stand Test (CS-30), maximum step length, Timed up & Go (TUG), standing on one leg with eyes open were assessed as physical functioning. Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQOL), and Fall Efficacy Scale (FES) were assessed. After the home visiting intervention, we conducted a 6-month follow-up study of physical functioning and exercise adherence that was reinforced prompting by telephone. An analysis of variance indicated that both groups significantly increased scores in the standing on one leg with eyes open, maximum step length, TUG, CS-30, HRQOL (role physical and emotional), and FES following the interventions. The results of the follow-up investigations indicated that both groups maintained their CS-30, maximum step length, standing on one leg with eyes open, and HRQOL (role physical and emotional) scores until 6-months after the intervention. However, TUG and FES scores decreased significantly at the 3- and 6-month follow-up assessment. These results indicated that the effects of simple-exercise and multiple-exercise conducted by visiting homes did not have a differential effect on functioning, HRQOL or FES. The frequency of exercise decreased significantly in both groups 1-5 weeks into the follow-up period. However, the exercise frequencies of both groups were maintained at over three times a week in 5-24 weeks. It is suggested that both types of home-based exercise programs including follow-up phone calls were equally effective for maintaining exercise adherence over a 6-month period.