Aging reduces respiratory muscle strength

We came across this study (Oct 2014) from the Clinical Interventions in Aging which we felt worth sharing because it’s an area of women’s health (and applicable to men’s health) that we haven’t discussed before.

Single – and multiple – set resistance training improves skeletal and respiratory muscle strength in elderly women

Aging & biological modifications

The study identifies how, with aging, biological modifications take place which, generally speaking, “involves a reduction in physical capacity, in association with functional deficits, such as reduced levels of respiratory muscle strength and muscle strength, reduced cardiorespiratory capacity, and reduced mobility, all of which make completing daily activities more difficult.(1-3) A recent study established a strong association between poor physical fitness and respiratory (breathing) disorders.(3)

This dysfunction of the breathing muscles, it states, “can lead to hyperventilation, reduction in exercise tolerance, and even respiratory insufficiency; also, it is associated with an increase in morbidity and mortality rates.(3,4)

The study refers to how specific breathing muscle training has shown significant effects on the breathing muscle strength and endurance in athletes (5). It continues to remark that resistance training can be used for improving breathing muscle strength and that “the evaluation of respiratory muscle strength is of great clinical importance.”

How to reduce age-related breathing decline

In order to limit the progressive reduction of breathing muscle strength that sedentary ageing elicits, the study results suggested “elderly women who are not in the habit of physical activity may start with single-set resistance training programs as a short-term strategy for the maintenance of health.”

But there is a much more direct method for training the breathing muscles to become stronger, and that is POWERbreathe breathing muscle training. This is not to diminish though the benefits of physical activity for the maintenance of health. However, when combined with physical activity, breathing muscle training will improve breathing strength and stamina more than physical activity alone. And the benefits of this type of training apply equally to ageing men too.

Breathing strength and stamina will improve after just 4-weeks of POWERbreathe training, if the scientifically proven training regimen of 30 breaths twice a day is followed. Furthermore, as breathing stamina and strength improve, everyday tasks that once left you breathless will feel more comfortable. Consequently, daily activities will feel easier to achieve and you’ll find yourself enjoying life more.


1. Westcott WL. Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health. Curr Sports Med Rep. 2012;11(4):209–216. [PubMed]

2. Fiatarone MA, Marks EC, Ryan ND, Meredith CN, Lipsitz LA, Evans WJ. High-intensity strength training in nonagenarians. Effects on skeletal muscle. JAMA. 1990;263(22):3029–3034. [PubMed]

3. Vaz Fragoso CA, Enright PL, McAvay G, Van Ness PH, Gill TM. Frailty and respiratory impairment in older persons. Am J Med. 2012;125(1):79– 86. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

4. Sin DD, Wu L, Man SF. The relationship between reduced lung function and cardiovascular mortality: a population-based study and a systematic review of the literature. Chest. 2005;127(6):1952–1959. [PubMed]

5. HajGhanbari B, Yamabayashi C, Buna TR, et al. Effects of respiratory muscle training on performance in athletes: a systematic review with meta- analyses. J Strength Cond Res. 2013;27(6):1643–1663. [PubMed]