Reliability and relationships among handgrip strength, leg extensor strength and power, and balance in older men

Nathaniel D.M. Jenkins, Samuel L. Buckner, Haley C. Bergstrom, Kristen C. Cochrane, Jacob A. Goldsmith, Terry J. Housh, Glen O. Johnson, Richard J. Schmidt, Joel T. Cramer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Purpose: To quantify the reliability of isometric leg extension torque (LEMVC), rate of torque development (LERTD), isometric handgrip force (HGMVC) and RFD (HGRFD), isokinetic leg extension torque and power at 1.05rad·s-1 and 3.14rad·s-1; and explore relationships among strength, power, and balance in older men. Methods: Sixteen older men completed 3 isometric handgrips, 3 isometric leg extensions, and 3 isokinetic leg extensions at 1.05rad·s-1 and 3.14rad·s-1 during two visits. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs), ICC confidence intervals (95% CI), coefficients of variation (CVs), and Pearson correlation coefficients were calculated. Results: LERTD demonstrated no reliability. The CVs for LERTD and HGRFD were ≤23.26%. HGMVC wasn't related to leg extension torque or power, or balance (r=0.14-0.47; p>0.05). However, moderate to strong relationships were found among isokinetic leg extension torque at 1.05rad·s-1 and 3.14rad·s-1, leg extension mean power at 1.05rad·s-1, and functional reach (r=0.51-0.95; p≤0.05). Conclusions: LERTD and HGRFD weren't reliable and shouldn't be used as outcome variables in older men. Handgrip strength may not be an appropriate surrogate for lower body strength, power, or balance. Instead, perhaps handgrip strength should only be used to describe upper body strength or functionality, which may compliment isokinetic assessments of lower body strength, which were reliable and related to balance. •Leg extension RTD and handgrip RFD were unreliable in older men.•Handgrip strength was not related to leg extensor strength, power, or balance.•Isokinetic leg extension strength and power were reliable and related to balance.•Handgrip strength may not be an appropriate surrogate to lower body muscle function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-50
Number of pages4
JournalExperimental Gerontology
StatePublished - Oct 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
TJH and JTC are the principal or co-investigators of currently-funded research or service contracts at the University of Nebraska—Lincoln with Abbott Nutrition, General Nutrition Center, and Stepan Lipid Nutrition. In addition, this study was supported in part by the University of Nebraska Agricultural Research Division with funds provided through the Hatch Act (Accession #1000080 ; Project #NEB-36-078 ). However, these funding agencies had no involvement in the study design, data collection, analysis and interpretation of the data, writing of the manuscript, or in the decision to submit this manuscript for publication.


  • Aging
  • Functionality
  • Intraclass correlation coefficient
  • Power
  • Rate of force development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Aging
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Endocrinology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Reliability and relationships among handgrip strength, leg extensor strength and power, and balance in older men'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this