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Objectives: To assess the validity (convergent and construct) and reliability of the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) among non-disabled adults between 65 to 74 years of age residing in the Andes Mountains of Colombia.

Methods: Design: Validation study; Participants: 150 subjects aged 65 to 74 years recruited from elderly associations (day-centers) in Manizales, Colombia.Measurements: The SPPB tests of balance, including time to walk 4 meters and time required to stand from a chair 5 times were administered to all participants.  Reliability was analyzed with a 7-day interval between assessments and use of repeated ANOVA testing. Construct validity was assessed using factor analysis and by testing the relationship between SPPB and depressive symptoms, cognitive function, and self rated health (SRH), while the concurrent validity was measured through relationships with mobility limitations and disability in Activities of Daily Living (ADL). ANOVA tests were used to establish these associations.

Results: Test-retest reliability of the SPPB was high: 0.87 (CI95%: 0.77-0.96). A one factor solution was found with three SPPB tests. SPPB was related to self-rated health, limitations in walking and climbing steps and to indicators of disability, as well as to cognitive function and depression. There was a graded decrease in the mean SPPB score with increasing disability and poor health.

Conclusion: The Spanish version of SPPB is reliable and valid to assess physical performance among older adults from our region.  Future studies should establish their clinical applications and explore usage in population studies.

José Fernando Gómez Montes, Universidad de Caldas

Departamento Clinico

Facultad de ciencias para la salud

Universidad de Caldas



Carmen-Lucia Curcio, Universidad de Caldas

Departamento Acción Fisica Humana

Facultad de ciencias para la salud

Universidad de Caldas





Beatriz Alvarado, Queens University

Department of Community Health and Epidemiology

Queens University

Kingston, Ontario


Maria Victoria Zunzunegui, Université de Montréal

Département de médecine sociale et préventive Faculté de médecine, Université de Montréal

Centre Recherche du Centre Hospitalière Université de Montréal  (CRCHUM)

Québec, Canada

Jack Guralnik, University of Maryland

Department of Epidemiology and Public Health. University of Maryland, School of Medicine

Baltimore, MD, USA.

Gómez Montes, J. F., Curcio, C.-L., Alvarado, B., Zunzunegui, M. V., & Guralnik, J. (2024). Validity and reliability of the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB): a pilot study on mobility in the Colombian Andes. Colombia Medica, 44(3), 165–171. (Original work published September 30, 2013)

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Received 2012-08-11
Accepted 2013-07-24
Published 2024-06-24