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Hyungsoon Ahn 1 Article
Association between levels of physical activity and low handgrip strength: Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2014-2019
Hyungsoon Ahn, Hwa Young Choi, Moran Ki
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022027.   Published online February 21, 2022
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
This study aimed to investigate the association between levels of physical activity (PA) and low handgrip strength in Korean adults.
Our cross-sectional study design included 24,109 Korean adults older than 19 years of age who participated in the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2014–2019. Low handgrip strength is described as hand strength less than the cut-off value of the 20th percentile of handgrip strength from a healthy population in each gender and age group. PA was categorized into three levels (inactive, active, and highly active) according to the World Health Organization’s global recommendations on PA for health. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to examine the association between levels of PA and low handgrip strength.
Odds ratios (ORs) for low handgrip strength were significantly higher in middle-aged women who were active (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.40; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.15 to 1.69) and inactive (aOR, 1.47; 95% CI, 1.23 to 1.76) than in those highly active in walking exercise. Most of older people had significantly higher ORs for low handgrip strength in active compared to highly active in the context of aerobic, muscle strengthening, and walking exercise.
Walking exercise was associated with a lower risk of sarcopenia in middle-aged women and older individuals. However, further studies are necessary to confirm the causal relationship between levels of PA and low handgrip strength.
Korean summary
본 연구는 국민건강영양조사 2014-2019년도 자료를 활용하여 한국인 만 19세 이상 건강한 성인을 대상으로 낮은 악력의 기준값을 성별 및 연령그룹별로 도출하고 유산소 운동, 근력 운동, 걷기 운동 수준과 낮은 악력의 연관성을 분석하였다. 분석 결과, 중년 여성과 노년층에서 걷기 운동이 근감소증 발생의 예방과 연관성이 있음을 알 수 있었다.
Key Message
The association between levels of physical activity and low handgrip strength was different by sex and age groups. For women, walking exercise was associated with low handgrip strength, but not for men. By age groups, muscle strengthening exercise could help prevent sarcopenia in the young population, aerobic exercise has the potential to prevent sarcopenia in middle-aged individuals, and walking exercise could reduce sarcopenia risk in older individuals.


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