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Cohort study
Engaging in even a small amount of walking is associated with lower mortality in older adults
  1. José Marmeleira1,2,3
  1. 1 Departamento de Desporto e Saúde, Escola de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade de Évora, Évora, Portugal
  2. 2 Research Centre in Sports Sciences, Health Sciences and Human Development, CIDESD, Portugal
  3. 3 Comprehensive Health Research Centre, Universidade de Évora, Évora, Portugal
  1. Correspondence to Dr José Marmeleira, Departamento de Desporto e Saúde, Universidade de Évora, Évora 7005-399, Portugal; jmarmel{at}

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Commentary on: Patel AV, Hildebrand JS, Leach CR, et al. Walking in Relation to Mortality in a Large Prospective Cohort of Older U.S. Adults. Am J Prev Med 2018;54:10–19.

Implications for practice and research

  • Older adults could experience significant health benefits from engaging in a simple physical activity such as walking.

  • With older adults, health practitioners should consider that some physical activity is better than none.

  • Future related research should use objective measures of physical activity and consider its changes over time.


The increase of human longevity is accompanied by challenging health issues due to the inherent high morbidity and cost of care. Physical activity is a recognised non-pharmacological strategy that promotes successful ageing and has a significant positive impact on health and functional status of the elderly.1 2 Although walking is a simple and usual form of physical activity, relatively few studies …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.