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The Gazette: Late-life dynamo

Published: 20 Apr 2010

When 91-year old Olga Kotelko walked through the crowd of young men at the McGill gym and started pumping iron, she caused quite a stir. By the time she was on her sixth rep of perfectly executed bench presses, most of the testosterone set had racked their weights and were staring in awe...

Olga Kotelko's super athletic lifestyle suggests it's possible to improve speed, strength and power later in life… When 91-year old Olga Kotelko walked through the crowd of young men at the McGill gym and started pumping iron, she caused quite a stir. By the time she was on her sixth rep of perfectly executed bench presses, most of the testosterone set had racked their weights and were staring in awe... Visiting Montreal from her home in Vancouver, Kotelko was a guest of Tanja Taivassalo, assistant professor in McGill's department of kinesiology and physical education. Just as much in awe of Kotelko as the McGill gym rats, albeit with a more scientific interest, Taivaissalo spent several days putting Kotelko through a series of physical tests. The goal is to see what sets her apart from other 91-year-olds who aren't able to bench press 60 lbs., maintain a 140 average at 10-pin bowling or train three times a week at the track and another three days a week in the pool.

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