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Table 2 Components of fitness programs and physical activity

From: Best practices for physical activity programs and behavior counseling in older adult populations

  Lifestyle Endurance1 Strength Flexibility Balance
Frequency (days/week) 5–7 5–7 2 or 3 2–3 1–7
Intensity Moderate 12–14 RPE‘somewhat hard’40 to 60%Estimated HRmax Resistance to movement that overloads withgreater resistance have agreater effect To point of resistance or mild discomfort Progress difficulty by decreasing the support as competence increases
Volume Accumulate at least 30 min in bouts of 10 min or longer At least 30 min Two to three sets; 10–12 repetitions; four upper (biceps, shoulder flexion, chest press, and back row) and four lower body (hamstrings, quadriceps, leg press, and calves) 10 to 30 s progressing longer if desired. Repeat three to four times for each stretch. Areas to include, e.g., chest, neck ROM, hamstrings, quadriceps and hip flexors, calf soleus and gastrocnemius, hands, and triceps Dynamic, focus on mobility. Static, focus on one leg stance. Four to 10 different exercises are available
Special instructions Incorporated into or added to the endurance volume for long-term adherence Weight-bearingen couraged.Increase duration (up to or above 30 min) before increasing intensity up to moderate Sets separated by 1 min; sessions separated by 1 day. Options: free weights, machines, elastic resistance bands, and calisthenics No bouncing; PNF technique; incorporate into lifestyle, e.g., gardening and putting away dishes in high and low shelves Incorporate into lifestyle, e.g., balance exercise while standing in line, performing other tasks; environmental safety important
  1. HR Heart rate, ROM range of motion, PNF progressive neuromuscular facilitation, RM repetition maximum, RPE rate of perceived exertion
  2. 1For selected older adults for whom vigorous exercise is appropriate and desired, the guideline for vigorous activity is at least 20 min three times/week [30]