Efficacy of power training to improve physical function in individuals diagnosed with frailty and chronic disease: A meta-analysis

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Muscle power training with emphasis on high-velocity of concentric movement improves physical functionality in healthy older adults, and, maybe superior to traditional exercise programs. Power training may also be advantageous for patients with acute and chronic illnesses, as well as frail individuals. To determine the efficacy of power training compared with traditional resistance training on physical function outcomes in individuals diagnosed with frailty, acute illness or chronic disease. PubMed (MEDLINE), CINAHL, PEDro, Web of Science, and Google Scholar. (1) at least one study group receives muscle power training of randomized controlled trial (RCT) (2) study participants diagnosed as prefrail, frail or have an ongoing acute or chronic disease, condition or illness; (3) study participants over the age of 18; (4) publication in English language; (5) included physical function as the primary or secondary outcome measures. Two independent reviewers assessed articles for inclusion and graded the methodological quality using Cochrane Risk-of-Bias tool for RCTs. Fourteen RCTs met the inclusion criteria. In seven studies, muscle power training was more effective at improving physical function compared to control activities with a mean fixed effect size (ES) of 0.41 (p = 0.006; 95% CI 0.12 to 0.71). Power training and conventional resistance training had similar effectiveness in eight studies with a mean fixed ES of 0.10 (p = 0.061; 95% CI –0.01 to 0.40). Muscle power training is just as efficacious for improving physical function in individuals diagnosed with frailty and chronic disease when compared to traditional resistance training. The advantages of power training with reduced work per session may support power training as a preferential exercise modality for clinical populations. The findings should be interpreted with caution since generalizability is questioned due to the heterogeneity of patient populations enrolled and participants were relatively mobile at baseline.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere15339
JournalPhysiological Reports
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Physiological Reports published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of The Physiological Society and the American Physiological Society.


  • chronic disease
  • exercise
  • frailty
  • patient outcomes
  • physical function
  • power training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Efficacy of power training to improve physical function in individuals diagnosed with frailty and chronic disease: A meta-analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this