ASSOCIATION OF FUNCTIONAL FITNESS WITH HEALTH-RELATED QUALITY OF LIFE IN POSTMENOPAUSAL WOMEN
Zbigniew Marcin Ossowski , Sylwia Neubauer Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport , Medical University of Gdansk , Gdansk, Poland
Relevance of the research. Ageing is a process which brings along a decline of cognitive performance, intellectual functions and functional efficiency (Ostrzyżek & Marcinkowski, 2009). These adverse changes can directly impact the decrease in the quality of life for the elderly. Physical activity that is right programmed can be crucial in the prevention of these changes (Moilanen et al., 2012). The aim of the study was to determine the association of different components of physical fitness with HRQoL in postmenopausal women.
Research methods and organization. The final sample comprised 90 postmenopausal women (M = 67.8 ± 4.5 years) from the University of the Third Age. Physical fitness was assessed with the Senior Fitness Test battery, and HRQoL was evaluated with the Long Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36) – Polish version (Tylka & Piotrowicz, 2009). The statistical analysis was carried out with a level of significance of p < .05.
Results and discussion. Flexibility of trunk, dynamic balance and endurance were positively correlated with the overall HRQoL in women (r = .36, p < .00; r = – .37, p < .00; r = .26, p = .04, respectively). Moratalla et al. (2015) have shown that higher physical fitness is associated with better HRQoL in early postmenopause. Lower-body flexibility and upper-body muscle strength were the most important independent fitness indicators, explaining ~30 % of HRQoL. However, our study shows significant correlation between strength and HRQoL. Moving on to interpretation of the results, it is essential to mention that menopause causes a decrease in the quality of life, which is independent from age, vasomotor symptoms and other sociodemographic variables (Blumel et al., 2000; Mohammadalizadeh Charandabi et al., 2015). We consider that differences on the field of age, functional fitness and education background that were observed between groups can be the reason of discrepancy between achieved results.
Conclusions. The study suggests paying special attention to flexibility, balance and endurance when programming activity programs aimed at improving life standard for women in postmenopausal age. The study was conducted within the framework of the EU project entitled “Active lifestyles and predictors of risk for incapacity in senior population: RISINC2013-FRAILTY and RISINC2013-FALLS”.