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Chronological Age Vs. Physical Fitness

Cardiorespiratory fitness levels trump age alone.

Senior couple on beach to illustrate exercise and chronological age

Higher aerobic fitness levels in older adults are more predictive of longevity than chronological age alone, according to findings published in The American Journal of Cardiology (2022; 170, 132–37). Researchers at Kaiser Permanente in Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles, assessed the relationship between cardiorespiratory fitness, age and death among patients ages 60–90 over approximately 3.5 years.

Data analysis showed that those between the ages of 80 and 90 with high fitness levels had better survival rates than their younger counterparts who had low fitness levels. Study authors conclude that chronological age should not be the only factor when assessing risk of death from all causes.

See also: More Long-Term Aerobic Fitness Benefits

Shirley Archer, JD, MA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA, is an internationally acknowledged integrative health and mindfulness specialist, best-selling author of 16 fitness and wellness books translated into multiple languages and sold worldwide, award-winning health journalist, contributing editor to Fitness Journal, media spokesperson, and IDEA's 2008 Fitness Instructor of the Year. She's a 25-year industry veteran and former health and fitness educator at the Stanford Prevention Research Center, who has served on multiple industry committees and co-authored trade books and manuals for ACE, ACSM and YMCA of the USA. She has appeared on TV worldwide and was a featured trainer on America's Next Top Model.

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