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Leisure Time Physical Activity Reduces The Risk Of Premature Death

Physical inactivity has been a major public health issue for some time, but it was not well understood whether vigorous intensity exercise was more beneficial than lighter intensity exercise in preventing premature deaths. A study in PLoS One reviewed data on middle-aged men and women aged 40-60 from the City of Helsinki Employee questionnaire. Respondents were grouped into three categories based on their responses: low moderate, high moderate, and vigorous intensity exercise.

The results showed that compared with low moderate intensity exercisers, those who completed vigorous exercise had a lower risk of premature death. A higher volume of physical activity overall was also associated with lowered premature death risk. The authors concluded that, for middle-aged men and women who participate in some physical activity, vigorous exercise may provide greater health benefits in preventing premature death. 

Health clubs provide a convenient, safe space to engage in exercise at all intensities, with most offering low and vigorous intensity group exercise options.

Lahti J, Holstila A, Lahelma E, Rahkonen O. Leisure-time physical activity and all-cause mortality. PLoS One. 2014 Jul 2;9(7):e101548. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0101548. eCollection 2014.

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