Walking Speed: A Powerful Predictor of Functional Health

by: Len Kravitz, PhD

Research

Studies explain why brisk walking can improve the health of older exercisers.

Thanks to a spike in pace-related research over the past decade, we now know that walking speed is a significant vital sign for older clients. Study findings have associated slow walking speed with a heightened risk of mortality in older adults, while brisk walking has been linked to better health (Franklin et al. 2015). These are important insights because, until recently, researchers had no idea that walking speed was such a strong vital-sign predictor. Connections between walking speed and health improvements make a persuasive case for helping older clients pick up the pace.

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Fitness Journal, Volume 15, Issue 5

© 2018 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

About the Author

Len Kravitz, PhD

Len Kravitz, PhD IDEA Author/Presenter

Len Kravitz, PhD, is the program coordinator of exercise science and a researcher at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, where he recently won the Outstanding Teacher of the Year award. Len was also honored as the 2006 Fitness Educator of the Year by the American Council on Exercise.