Moderate to strong tracking of selected measures of muscle strength and power both during adolescence (Maia et al., 2001; Malina, 1996; Pate et al., 1999) and from adolescence into adulthood (Beunen et al., 1992; Malina, 1996; Mikkelsson et al., 2006; Twisk et al., 2000) suggests that measures of musculoskeletal fitness in youth may prove to be useful predictors of future adult health. Tracking relationships appear to be weaker during the preadolescent years and more stable for lower- versus upper-body strength/power measures (Malina et al., 2004). Tracking variability in youth may be explained by age-related differences in the development of inter- and intramuscular coordination and differing levels of experience with specific fitness tests. Further, there is increasing evidence of moderate tracking of biologic health markers, especially for coronary heart disease, from childhood/adolescence into adulthood that in the future may be shown to be related to musculoskeletal fitness in youth (Bao et al., 1995; Froberg and Andersen, 2005; Malina et al., 2004; Twisk et al., 1995, 1997). Whether changes in muscle strength, endurance, and power during youth are predictive of adult health outcomes in later life, however, remains to be determined.
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