The results of a lengthy study on the “Longevity of Runners” was published by the Stanford University school of Medicine in August 2008. (Archives of Internal Medicine #168/15)
In the early 1980’s many scientists thought that vigorous exercise would do older folks more harm than good. Some even feared the long-term effects of the then new jogging craze would amount to a flood of orthopedic injuries. Dr. James Fries MD, Professor and senior author of the study had a different view and found that running slows the aging clock.
1000 people took part in the “annual survey style study” that began in 1984. Half of the participants in the study were members of a national running club and over the age of 50. While the other half that formed the control group were healthy Northern Californians.
Of the 1000 participants, now in their 70’s and 80’s, only 284 runners and 156 people from the control group completed the 21 year study.
The results of the study concluded that the runners remained youthful and fit in comparison to the members of the control group. The runners also smoked less and out lived the members of the control group by nearly 40%. The study showed that by year nineteen, only 15% of the runners had died compared to 34% of the control group. The study also showed that the aged runners had fewer physical disabilities and were more mobile and independent.
Tilman von der Linde, RMT.
Muscles in Motion – Vancouver