A new study by researchers at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) says that older women may be able to regain muscle strength, but cannot conjure up the power required to prevent falls.
The study analyzed the strength gains in muscles of inactive older women and compared them to inactive younger women after both groups underwent a 8-week training program. While both groups had equivalent strength gains, power was significantly lower in the older group.
"Power is more important than strength for recovery from loss of balance or walking ability," said Dain LaRoche, a co-author of the study. Strength gain alone is not enough to prevent falls in older women, she added.
The details are published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.