Aim: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of a community-based group exercise program on physical functioning among elderly people. Methods: This prospective observational study enrolled 494 persons aged 70-84 years who volunteered for the study and completed a baseline measurement in 2006 and were re-evaluated 1 year later in 2007. The exercise regimen consisted of resistance training and recreational exercise for 1.5 hours conducted twice a month. Physical functioning was evaluated by a self-administered questionnaire consisting of the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence (TMIG-IC) and Motor Fitness Scale (MFS). Decline in physical functioning was defined as a reduction in either TMIG-IC or MFS scores of more than 2 points deviation from the median change of each score. Results: TMIG-IC and MFS results were obtained from 494 and 392 eligible subjects, respectively. After 1 year, 68 subjects (TMIG-IC) and 88 subjects (MFS) reported a decline in physical functioning. After adjustment for confounding factors, the odds ratio of reduced physical functioning, as assessed by the TMIG-IC among the subjects who did not participate in the exercise group and those who did, were 1.00 (control) and 0.15 (95% confidence interval, 0.01-0.75). Similar results were obtained when assessed on the MFS. Conclusion: These results suggest that participation in a community-based exercise group of elderly people was effective in maintaining self-reported physical function.
- Community-based group exercise
- Subjective physical function