"Physically active transport is probably our best bet for helping populations at risk of heart disease and diabetes to increase physical activity levels, since we have to spend time getting to and from work anyway," says Dr Erik Hemmingsson, who led the research.
The study was carried out at the Obesity Unit at Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm and lasted 18 months. It involved 120 obese and unfit women between the ages of 30 and 60 with a waist circumference of at least 88 centimetres (34.6 inches). The subjects were randomly assigned to two groups, a control group that focused on walking and an intervention group that focused on cycling.
The control group was given pedometers and attended two two-hour group meetings, at which they were encouraged to walk to and from work to attain a daily step count of 10,000. The cycling group received the same support plus three individual consultations with a physician, who provided each women with a Physical activity on Prescription (PaP) specifically encouraging them to cycle to and from work. They also attended two additional group meetings and were lent a new ladies' bicycle during the 18 months.
The results show that a larger proportion of the women in the intervention group (39%) cycled two kilometres or more per day than the women in the control group (9%).
"Bearing in mind that many of the women in the cycling group hadn't been on a bike since they were children, it was gratifying to see that so many of them actually managed to cycle regularly to work," says Dr Hemmingsson.
Roughly the same proportion of women in both groups achieved the goal of 10,000 steps a day which suggests that cycling does not have to detract from daily walks.
"The support programme given to the intervention group was deliberately not particularly expensive since we wanted the programme to be a feasible option for primary care," adds Dr Hemmingsson. "A positive side-effect was that car-driving dropped by 34 per cent."Publication:
International Journal of Obesity, online 5 May 2009, DOI: 10.1038/ijo.2009.77.
Katarina Sternudd | EurekAlert!
Innovative genetic tests for children with developmental disorders and epilepsy
11.07.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
Oxygen loss in the coastal Baltic Sea is “unprecedentedly severe”
05.07.2018 | European Geosciences Union
A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.
The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
20.07.2018 | Information Technology
20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences