CONTINUED TRAINING DOES NOT HALT PERFORMANCE DECLINE WITH INCREASING AGE
Wilkin, L. D., Mattern, C. O., Kim, J., Lekan, J. M., & Devor, S. T. (2001). Age and training hours as predictors of finish times of masters athletes in a triathlon. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 33(5), Supplement abstract 747.
Athletes (M = 65; F = 17), ranging in age from 20 to 61, competed in a one-half Ironman triathlon. Total training volume by decade and total weekly training hours were related to triathlon performance.
Thre were no gender differences in the data so Ss were pooled for analysis. There were no differences across decades for training hours but there were significant differences in finish times. The rate of increase in finish time was 5.2% per decade. Age was the significant factor in predicting performance time. Adding training values did not change the prediction.
Implication. Continued training with increasing age maintains relative performance differences within an age group but does not halt absolute performance decline with age.
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