14th Jul 2017

The age at which you peak

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person standing on a mountain peak
Lucy Fallick

Are you having difficulty remembering names and faces? Or maybe you’ve tried learning a language in retirement, but to no avail? Don’t fret, its not you per se – it’s just that you’ve probably already ‘peaked’ at those skills.

Scientific studies indicate that there are specific ages at which humans peak at certain abilities. For example, muscle strength peaks at 25 years of age while arithmetic skills are at their strongest at 50.

So while you may be ‘past your best’ in terms of:

  • learning a new language (age seven)
  • brain processing power (age 18)
  • running a marathon (age 28)
  • playing chess (age 31) and
  • making a Nobel Prize-winning discovery (age 40)…

 



You may be excelling at understanding others’ emotions better (peaks at age 51), or perhaps you’re feeling most satisfied with your life (peaks at both age 23 and 69).

Or maybe you’re further along in the journey of life and relishing an exceptional vocabulary (age 71) and happiness with your body (age 74). And something else to look forward to – psychological wellbeing is said to peak at 82 years of age; proof that it’s not all downhill from your 20s.

What do you think about these ‘peak’ ages? What are you enjoying most about your current life stage?

Related articles:
Ageing: what's normal, what's not
Five great myths of ageing





COMMENTS

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Maggie
14th Jul 2017
10:46am
It would be most interesting to know the source of some of this stuff!

If you have not had an exceptional vocabulary before 71 you aren't suddenly going to get one then, and as for psychological well-being: there are too many of us afflicted with a fair old amount of suffering and feeling very lonely after the loss of a loved one.

We are constantly being told we will have to work for longer just to scrape along in our old age and when we get there, it is not really satisfying at all.

I would not say I was "happy" with my body, unless accepting the fact that it's downhill from here is called happiness.

What I am enjoying is the feeling that I can sit back a bit and let the world go by without feeling guilt that I am not trying to fix it.

Being on my own I like the freedom of being able to eat what I want and when, get up and go to bed when I want, watch what I want on TV and listen to my kind of music.

I like the freedom of responsibility for other people i.e. children, most of all.
missmarple
14th Jul 2017
12:51pm
Maggie I am with you all the way, there are some good pro's for being on your own ie: your last paragraph
Rosret
14th Jul 2017
7:27pm
Yes, its a pretty shaky article.
Olympians peak in the late teens. The brain stops growing at 25.
I very much doubt the brain processing power is at its best at 18. If that was the case 18 year olds would be the best drivers on the road and yet we all know that is not the case.
I am not sure how they can delineate between total consumption of knowledge and ability to process information and think laterally.

PS - what's with the happiness with body as we approach 74? I am sure not enjoying the degeneration of my body line. Maybe Al steps in and we can't remember how we are supposed to look.
Janus
14th Jul 2017
11:03am
Generally agree, although there are MAJOR differences between the sexes - ask any 17 year old girl about the maturity of same aged boys.

I certainly know how hard it is to learn a new language at over 65. I am just learning to read music - Aaargh!!.

As for happiness with my body - dream on..74? I was not too bad at 20, but I am now looking for the warranty card to get some replacement knees, back, brain, hair, muscles etc. I suspect the warranty expired a while back.
dweezy2176
14th Jul 2017
11:49am
Looks a bit like one of the "medical breakthroughs" they inundate Channel 9 News with daily but the bottom line is nothing new or it may be available in 10/20 years .. it says muscle strength peaks at 25 yet I took up swimming at 65 and regularly knock over 1500 mts .. I, definitely, couldn't do that at 25!
George
14th Jul 2017
1:41pm
Interesting you mentioned Channel 9 - they do that to keep listeners from changing channels as they dish out crap non-news (such as a summary of police reports for the day - murders, fires, accidents, etc), while ignoring / suppressing the news of destruction being caused by our politicians in government through non-action / destructive policies.

Hope YLC is not going down to that level - especially with such news stories without indicating the source!
Strummer
15th Jul 2017
8:35am
A friend of mine sat through a hour of Channel 9 news because their advertising said they were going to explain how to make $145 extra per week. The "story" came on even after the weather and what was the big secret? Get a job.
MjP
14th Jul 2017
3:06pm
I lost my wife last year so at 69 I am certainly not satisfied with my life, but life goes on and I need to recognise that things will never be the same again.
Alexii
14th Jul 2017
5:54pm
Sorry to hear of the loss of your wife, MjP. I'd hate to see my darling one pass away. Hard to imagine in fact.
Rosret
14th Jul 2017
7:33pm
Yes - and at some stage every married person will face your grief. Along with that is declining health and concern about finances etc etc.
Maybe this over 75 age group is the last generation where old age is financially secure and plentiful - I hope not.
musicveg
16th Jul 2017
6:05pm
Where do they get this info? I find it hard to agree with any of it because I think everyone is different and it depends on how you have looked after yourself and what you are doing in life. I believe the body and mind is very resilient and able to improve at any age. Too many averages does not make good facts.


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