Muscle growth appears to stop after 80, new research suggestsWomen in their 80s did not build muscle mass after participating in a three-month weight lifting program, a recent study found.
Using magnetic resonance imagining (MRI), researchers at Ball State University measured the size of the thigh muscles of the six octogenarian women who participated in the study. After three months of strength training aimed at increasing muscle size, the women's quadriceps were measured again. Researchers found that their muscle size did not increase. Still, the participants were able to increase the amount of weight they could lift over the three-month program.
Researchers say the results of the study surprised them in light of the fact that previous studies have found that septuagenarians were able to increase muscle mass by 5% using similar methods. Study authors suggest that people start building muscle before they reach their 80s. The study appears online in the Journal of Applied Physiology.