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Regular assessment of psycho-physiological parameters in aged subjects helps to clarify physical and mental conditions which are important in the prevention of health-endangering events to assure a healthy aging. Thirty older care female residents consented voluntarily to participate in the study. The somatic and psycho-physiological parameters recorded were handgrip force, disjunctive reaction time, balance control and whole body movement coordination, the electrocardiogram and heart rate variability. Significant correlations were found between (a) reaction time and balance control efficiency (r = −0.567, p < 0.009), (b) reaction time and movement coordination accuracy (r = −0.453, p < 0.045), (c) cardiac state and movement coordination accuracy (r = 0.545, p < 0.016), (d) cardiac stress and cardiac state (r = −0.495, p < 0.031), and (e) cardiac stress and force (r = −0.822, p < 0.045). In conclusion, for the aim of establishing basic battery tests for assessing psycho-physiological condition of physical fitness our results emphasize the importance of systematic physical activity, endurance and strength training supporting muscle force, balance control and whole-body movement coordination, in addition to improving the cardiac stress index level. The strong interrelation among these parameters allows the drawing of a more complete view regarding the health condition of aged individuals.

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In animal models, unaccustomed eccentric exercise (EE) has been widely related to muscle fiber membrane (sarcolemma) damage. On the contrary, studies in humans reported that sarcolemma was not susceptible to damage following a single bout of EE. We hypothesized that the single bout of EE used by those studies was not sufficient to induce sarcolemma damage, in humans. In this study we examined muscle biopsies from untrained males who either performed six sets of 15 reps of maximum voluntary eccentric contractions (n=9), for six consecutive days, or served as control-group (n=6). Blood and biopsy samples were obtained one week prior to exercise, immediately after bout 3, and 24h after the last training session. In addition to standard haematoxylin-eosin staining, all biopsies were stained immunohistochemically using antibodies specific for fibronectin and desmin antigens. In the exercise-group, no biopsies taken at pre-exercise or post-exercise level showed evidence of sarcolemma damage as stained by anti-fibronectin antibody in eight of nine subjects. Serum creatine kinase (CK) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) activities increased significantly throughout the study despite the lack of sarcolemma damage.We suggest that in humans, repeated bouts of EE do not cause gross sarcolemma damage in the mid-belly of Vastus Lateralis.

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