Health benefits associated with exercise habituation in older Japanese men.
ABSTRACT The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of exercise habituation (3-32 years, mean 13.2 years) on physical vitality among five different groups.
One hundred and two independent, community-dwelling elderly Japanese men, aged 64.6 +/- 6.6 years, were recruited as subjects. The vital age test battery consisted of various coronary heart disease risk factors and physical fitness elements.
The results of analysis of variance revealed that vital age as an index of physical vitality was youngest in joggers (47.9 yr, N=18), intermediate in trekkers (55.8 yr, N=20) and walkers (59.1 yr, N=18), and oldest (69.6 yr, N=20) in patients with ischemic heart disease (IHD). The difference between chronological age and vital age was approximately 15 years (p<0.05) in joggers, and 8 years (p<0.05) in trekkers and walkers. The vital age of sedentary persons (N=26) was only 1.9 years (NS) younger than their chronological age, which was similar to the difference (vital age of 64.1 +/- 8.5 yr vs chronological age of 65.7 +/- 5.4 yr) previously observed in similarly aged exercising IHD patients.
These results indicate that exercise habituation significantly affects the overall health status of most individuals, irrespective of mode of exercise. Among the three modes of exercise, jogging may be most beneficial. Furthermore, regularly exercising coronary patients may have physical vitality similar to that of sedentary men.
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ABSTRACT: Loss of balance is a major risk factor for falls in the elderly, and physical exercise may improve balance in both elderly and middle-aged people. We propose a clinical trial to test the efficacy of an exercise program based on dance in improving balance in adult and young old subjects. We carried out a mono-institutional, randomized, controlled clinical trial. 40 subjects (aged 58 to 68 yr) were randomly allocated in two separate groups: the exercise group (n = 20) followed a 3-month exercise program; the control group (n = 20) did not engage in physical activities. Differences in balance between the end of the training period and the baseline were assessed using four different balance tests: Tinetti, Romberg, improved Romberg, Sit up and go. Results showed a significant improvement in balance in the exercise group at the end of the exercise program, whereas the control group did not show any significant changes. The comparison between exercise and control group variations in balance test scores showed a highly significant difference. 17 out of 20 subjects in the exercise group reported great or moderate satisfaction with the dance activity. Results suggest that physical activity based on dance may improve balance and hence be a useful tool in reducing the risk of falling in the elderly. The exercise program also revealed interesting psychosocial benefits.Aging clinical and experimental research 11/2005; 17(5):385-9. · 1.01 Impact Factor