health benefits of exercise

A really good critique of the essential nature of exercise by Thompson .
Regular and goal-appropriate exercise is critical to improving and maintaining both health and performance. However, the frequency, intensity, duration and type of activities needed to optimise health or achieve successful sports performance will differ considerably depending on an individual’s goals and capabilities. Although sport is one of many forms of exercise that can be counted towards daily physical activity, participation in sport is not necessary to meet current physical activity recommendations. The current consensus is that the minimum amount of physical activity needed to improve and maintain good health is 30 min moderate-intensity activity/d on at least 5 d/week. The evidence supporting this consensus is predominantly observational , in that performing regular aerobic (endurancej-type physical activity is associated with reduced morbidity and premature mortality from CVD, CHD, stroke and colorectal cancer. The exact dose needed to improve health and the slope of the dose-response gradient between physical activity and mortality for various diseases are not known, and one major limitation of the existing evidence is the lack of objective measurement of physical activity. Limited evidence indicates that a much higher dose of activity (45-90 min each day on at least 5 d/week) may be needed to prevent overweight and obesity and to avoid weight regain in previously overweight and obese individuals. The role of resistance training and heavy domestic work in reducing morbidity and premature mortality for various diseases is unclear. As most adults do not meet current recommendations there is a critical need for innovative approaches to increase physical activity across large-scale populations.
Thompson 2009 Exercise in improving health v performance. Proceedings Nutrition Society vol 68 pp 29-33.

Martin Eastwood

1 Comment

Back to top