Age-specific normal values for the incremental shuttle walk test in a healthy british population

S.L. Harrison, N.J. Greening, L. Houchen-Wolloff, J. Bankart, M.D.L. Morgan, M.C. Steiner, Sally J. Singh

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    PURPOSE:: The Incremental Shuttle Walk Test (ISWT) is an important functional and prognostic marker in chronic disease. Aging has a detrimental effect on exercise performance. The objective of this study was to produce normal age-specific values for the ISWT in a healthy British population and to explore whether additional variables improve the accuracy of a predictive equation. METHODS:: Healthy subjects (N = 152), aged 40 to 90 years, were recruited. Data collection occurred over 2 study visits. Anthropometric and demographic data were collected, and lung function and quadriceps maximal voluntary contraction were measured. An accelerometer was worn for 2 consecutive days at home. The Duke Activity Status Index was completed, and the greatest distance from 2 ISWTs was recorded. RESULTS:: One hundred forty subjects (56 men) with mean age (SD) of 59.4 (11.0) years completed 2 ISWTs. Forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1) was 109.1% (14.56%) predicted and ISWT distance was 737 m (183 m). Age-specific normal values for the ISWT were observed: mean (lower limit of normal) - 40 to 49 years, 824 m (765 m); 50 to 59 years, 788 m (730 m); 60 to 69 years, 699 m (649 m); and 70 years and older, 633 m (562 m). A predictive equation was developed from 114 subjects. Age, body mass index, FEV1, quadriceps maximal voluntary contraction, and Duke Activity Status Index contributed to ISWT distance predicting 50.4% of the variation in performance. CONCLUSION:: We have developed age-specific normal values for performance on the ISWT in a healthy British population. However, even using practical, clinically relevant variables, it is not possible to accurately predict exercise capacity from a regression equation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)309-313
    JournalJournal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Bibliographical note

    The full text of this item is not available from the repository.
    This is a non-final version of an article published in final form in Harrison, S.L. , Greening, N.J. , Houchen-Wolloff, L. , Bankart, J. , Morgan, M.D.L. , Steiner, M.C. and Singh, S.J. (2013) Age-specific normal values for the incremental shuttle walk test in a healthy british population. Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention, volume 33 (5): 309-313.


    • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
    • Incremental Shuttle Walk Test
    • pulmonary rehabilitation


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