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Monday
Feb242014

Group Fitness Reduces Cardiovascular Risk Factors In Healthy Adults

Research has shown that physical activity can help prevent heart disease, yet sticking to an exercise routine remains challenging. A study published in theOpen Journal of Preventive Medicine looks at the impact of a structured group fitness program on heart disease risk factors in healthy but sedentary adults. The program was developed to meet American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) exercise recommendations of 150 minutes per week, with strength and flexibility exercises twice per week. During the study, young adults with an average body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more and no other clinical symptoms of chronic disease participated in an introductory period of six weeks during which they started with 20 minute classes, followed by 24 weeks of hour-long group exercise sessions in their community five to six times per week. 

The results showed improvements in body mass, fat body mass percentage, lean mass, and blood lipid levels (cholesterol and triglycerides). In addition, participants attained a 98% compliance rate during the study, and after two years approximately 85% of the participants are still exercising regularly. Health clubs provide a supportive environment for new exercisers, and group classes can be a good way to help people continue their exercise routines for the long term.

Jinger S. Gottschall1*, Justin L. Jones1, Jackie Mills2, Bryce Hastings. Group fitness is effective in reducing cardiovascular disease risk factors in healthy adults. Open J Prev Med. Vol.3, No.1, 132-140 (2013).

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