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Estimated Age Effects in Athletic Events and Chess

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Abstract

Rates of decline are estimated using record bests by age for chess and for various track and field, road running, and swimming events. Using a fairly flexible functional form, the estimates show linear percent decline between age 35 and about age 70 and then quadratic decline after that. Chess shows much less decline than the physical activities. Rates of decline are generally larger for the longer distances, and for swimming they are larger for women than for men. An advantage of using best-performance records to estimate rates of decline is that the records are generally based on very large samples. In addition, the age range is large. In this study the age range is 35 to 100 for swimming, 35 to 98 for track and field and running, and 35 to 94 for chess. The estimates also do not suffer from traditional forms of selection bias.

Suggested Citation

  • Ray C. Fair, 2004. "Estimated Age Effects in Athletic Events and Chess," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1495, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Feb 2006.
  • Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:1495
    Note: CFP 1212.
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    File URL: http://cowles.yale.edu/sites/default/files/files/pub/d14/d1495.pdf
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    1. Fair, Ray C, 1994. "How Fast Do Old Men Slow Down?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(1), pages 103-118, February.
    2. Schmidt, Peter, 1976. "On the Statistical Estimation of Parametric Frontier Production Functions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 58(2), pages 238-239, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Castellucci, Fabrizio & Padula, Mario & Pica, Giovanni, 2011. "The age-productivity gradient: Evidence from a sample of F1 drivers," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 464-473, August.
    2. Fair Ray C, 2008. "Estimated Age Effects in Baseball," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-41, January.
    3. Bertoni, Marco & Brunello, Giorgio & Rocco, Lorenzo, 2015. "Selection and the age – productivity profile. Evidence from chess players," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 110(C), pages 45-58.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Aging; Biological capacity;

    JEL classification:

    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • C20 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - General
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General

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