Those who did best were likely to live longer, the British Medical Journal reported.
It is hoped such simple tests might help doctors spot "at-risk" patients.
The study, carried out at the Medical Research Council-funded Unit for Lifelong Health and Ageing, combined the results of more than 30 earlier research projects, involving tens of thousands of people which looked at "physical capability" and mortality.
The people involved were mostly over the age of 60, but living in the community rather than hospitals or care homes.
The researchers found that death rates over the period of the studies were 67% higher in people with the weakest grip strength compared with the strongest.
A similar pattern was found in the other measures, with the slowest walkers almost three times more likely to die compared with the fastest.
Those slowest to rise from a chair had double the mortality rate compared with those quickest to their feet.
Even being able to balance on one leg appeared to be linked with a reduced risk of death.