Introduction

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The locomotor system is also known as the musculoskeletal system.

It is made up of the skeleton, skeletal muscles, ligaments, tendons, joints, cartilage and other connective tissue.
These parts work together to allow your body to move.
Changes in the locomotor system with ageing can include the issues addressed below.

Posture
Age-related hyperkyphosis affects 20-40% of older adults and can be described as an exaggerated anterior curvature of the thoracic spine that is associated with aging.[1]

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Stooped posture, loss of height, and other distortions owing to atrophy and effect of weakness in skeleton and major muscle groups become responsible for posture and antigravity support.
The result is a more flexed posture with altered biomechanics, muscle imbalance, and slowly decreasing range in joints and overall decrease in safety.
The therapist may have to provide: exercises for strength, coordination and balance; walking aids; a wheelchair for the person if necessary.
Muscle Changes
1.Sarcopenia is defined as being a decline in muscle function (either walking speed or grip strength) associated with loss of muscle mass[2]. Sarcopenia most commonly affects elderly and sedentary populations and patients who have comorbidities that affect the musculoskeletal system or impair physical activity[3]. Sarcopenia leads to disability, falls, and increased mortality. Loss of muscle strength and aerobic function are 2 of the hallmarks of frailty. Sarcopenia has been linked to an increased prevalence of osteoporosis, thus further increasing its propensity to produce fractures.

If dietary intake of protein is poor, this will increase the problem
2.In aged muscle, satellite cells (act as stem cells and are responsible for the further growth and development of skeletal muscles) that experience prolonged quiescence undergo programmed cellular senescence. This is an irreversible non-dividing state that handicaps the regenerative capabilities of muscle. In the older person, training counteracts the normal decline in satellite cell number seen with ageing[4].

Effects of Ageing on Bone
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Osteoporosis is a major public health problem affecting millions of elderly individuals. Besides causing fractures, the disorder leads to severe psychosocial and financial consequences for the patient. The condition has many risk factors and is best managed by an interprofessional team of healthcare workers[5].

By 6070 years, skeletal mass may be reduced to half of that at age 30.

If dietary intake of vitamins and calcium is poor, this will increase the problem.
Osteoporosis increases the risk of insufficiency fractures. This can lead to later issues with range in the joint and mobility of the muscle[6].
Effects of Ageing on Joints
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No matter how healthy an individual is, as they age their joints will show some changes in mobility, due in part to changes in the connective tissues. As joint range of movement has a direct effect on posture and movement, this can result in marked alteration of function.

By age 65, 80% of the population has some articular disorder

eg Loss of resilience and elasticity in ligaments, cartilage and periarticular tissues; degeneration with erosion, and calcification of cartilage and capsule; gradual reduction in collagen but not in the water content.
Bunions, subluxation of small joints in hands and feet are common, as are painful feet and other chiropody problems.
Proprioception and general sensation may be decreased if changes to muscle and joints are compounded by nerve damage.
Loss of muscle bulk, degenerative joint changes and a decline in physical strength cause limitation of range and speed of movement. Disability ensues as a combined effect of muscular weakness, joint stiffness and impaired central mechanism for sensorimotor performance, so there is:

Less precision in fine movements and in rapid alternating movements
Irregular timing of action, loss of smooth flow of one form of action into another
Slowing down to avoid outcome of one action before planning the next. Confidence and reliability of action may be reduced. The individual may experience difficulty with intricate tasks (worse if complicated by uncompensated visual defect).
Balance