“For example, in addition to increasing overall walking, those who are able could aim to increase the number of steps completed in a given time. However, this requires further investigation.”
Tom Yates, Professor of Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour and Health at the University of Leicester and NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre, added: “While we have previously shown that walking pace is a very strong predictor of health status, we have not been able to confirm that adopting a bride walking pace actually causes better health.
“In this study, we used information contained in people’s genetic profile to show that a faster walking pace is indeed likely to lead to a younger biological age as measles by telomeres.”
The study is one of the first to probe the link between self-reported walking speeds and telomere length.
Participants’ pace was determined by measuring movement intensity from wearable activity tracking devices worn by participants.