Regardless of age, adults are advised to do at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous intensity activity, or an equivalent combination.
“Our study suggests that walking at least one hour every week is beneficial for people aged 85 years and older. Put simply, walk for 10 minutes every day” says Dr. Moo-Nyun Jin.
This study examined the association between walking and the risks of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality among adults aged 85 years and older.
Participants completed a questionnaire on leisure-time physical activity which asked the length of time spent each week on walking at a slow pace, moderate intensity activity such as cycling and brisk walking, and vigorous intensity activity such as running.
Participants were classified into five groups according to the time spent walking at a slow pace per week. 57.5% of participants did no slow walking, 8.5% walked less than one hour, 12.0% walked one to two hours, 8.7% walked two to three hours, and 13.3% walked more than three hours per week.
The researchers analyzed the associations between walking, all-cause mortality, and cardiovascular mortality after adjusting for energy expended on moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity. Compared to inactive individuals, those who walked at least one hour per week had 40% and 39% lower relative risks of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, respectively.
Dr. Jin said: “Walking was linked with a lower likelihood of dying in older adults, regardless of whether or not they did any moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity. Identifying the minimum amount of exercise that can benefit the oldest is an important goal since recommended activity levels can be difficult to achieve. Our study indicates that walking even just one hour every week is advantageous to those aged 85 years and older compared to being completely inactive. The take home message is to keep walking throughout life.”
European Society of Cardiology. “Octogenarians should walk 10 minutes a day to prolong life.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 2022. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/08/220824102906.htm>.
Photo by Bennet Tobias