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-Ageing- As we've seen, many people live healthy, happy and productive lives for many years after the standard retirement age. But sooner or later, barring accidents, we all become old. It used to be thought that ageing was a steady decline in functioning, with people going inevitably downhill from the age of 50 or so. But now we know that is not so. But now we know that is not so. The research evidence which suggested this pattern of ageing was seriously flawed in the way that it was done, and modern experiences show that ageing occurs quite differently. The general pattern seems to be that we have only a very gradual decline in our older years, and that decline can be slowed down by exercise and activity, but that eventually we reach a period of more rapid physical decline, which rarely lasts for more than about five years. Usually, the person dies at some point during the five-year period. In some old people, that decline is brought about by an accident-a fall or some similar event- which damages them physically but, more importantly, shakes their confidence and makes them feel unable to cope with life as they once did. How inevitable the decline is, once it has begun, is something nobady knows. We do know, though, that even old bodies can respond surprisingly well to exercises were found to be putting on muscle mass as a result - in other words, their muscles were responding to the exercise and becoming stronger. This finding has been repeated a number of times now, and it shows that the saying " it's never too late " may be even truer than we realize. The real danger in ageing, more than any other, seems to be the person's own beliefs about it. Someone who expects to decline and become incapable as they grow older is not likely to face their body or mind with extra challenges. Without exercise, our bodies have no incentive to grow stronger or to maintain their normal levels of strength; so they become weaker. This, to the person who expects to be weak as a result of age, is 'proof 'that they were right, and their belief in inevitable decline is confirmed. But really, it began as a self-fulfilling prophecy.

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老化 我々が見てきたように、多くの人々は標準的な定年以後、何年間も健康で、幸せで、生産的な人生を送ります。 しかし、遅かれ早かれ、問題がなければ、みんなが年をとります。 老化とは、人々が50歳あたりの年齢からどうしても坂を下る様に、機能が着実に低下することであると思われてきました。 しかし、現在、我々は、それがそうでないということを知っています。 老化のこのパターンを示した研究証拠には、それの行われ方に、重大な欠陥がありました、そして、現代の経験は老化が全く違って起こることを示しています。 一般的なパターンは、我々が高齢期には非常に緩やかな低下しかしないということ、そして、その低下は、運動と活動によって遅らせることができる、と言った事のように思われます。しかし、結局は、我々はより急速な身体的な低下の段階に達しますが、それはめったに、およそ5年以上の間は続かないのです。 通常、その人は、その5年の期間の間のどこかの時期で死にます。 一部の高齢者においては、その様な低下は事故 ― 転倒または類似した出来事 ― によってもたらされます。そして、それは身体的に彼らに損傷を与えますが、より重要なことは、彼らの自信をぐらつかせて、彼らを人生に対処することが、彼らがかつてそうしていた様には、できないと感じさることです。 いったん始まると、低下が、どれほど回避不能なものなのかは、誰にも分からないことです。 しかし、年老いた肉体でさえ驚くほどよく運動に反応しうるということを、我々は知っています、そして、運動は、結果的に、筋肉量を増やすことがわかりました-言い換えると、彼らの筋肉は運動に反応して、より強くなっていったのです。 この発見は、今では、何度も繰り返されています、そして、「遅すぎるということはない」という格言が、我々が理解している以上に、いっそう真実なのかもしれないと言うことを、それは示しています。 他の何より、老化の本当の危機は、老化について、その人自身が信じることであるようです。 年をとるにつれて、低下し、能力がなくなると予想する人は、彼らの身体や精神をさらなる挑戦に向かわせそうにありません。 運動をしないと、我々の身体には、より強くなったり、強さの正常レベルを維持する誘因がありません; それで、身体はより弱くなるのです。 年齢の結果として弱くなると思っている人にとって、これは彼らが正しかったという『証明』です、そして、回避不能な低下に対する彼らの信念は確かめられます。 しかし、本当は、それは自己達成的予言(自己遂行暗示)として始まったものなのです。 ☆ yamapさんのおかげで、結構長い、専門書を読む機会ができました。「運動しないとな~」

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質問者からのお礼

心理学の専門書の英文となっています・・・笑 私の担当箇所は、成人と老化の部位となっていて、 毎週その他の班の人も違う部位を訳し、発表する授業です>< もう少しお付き合いしてもらえると、うれしいです^^

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