Leeds health experts to investigate new fitness regimes

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VOLUNTEERS from Leeds are being recruited for a new fitness study.

Researchers at the University of Leeds are looking at ways to tackle Britain’s fitness crisis and improve Government physical activity guidelines.

The project, funded by Yorkshire-based national charity Heart Research UK, will test whether short bursts of activity are more beneficial than the moderate intensity exercise recommended by the government.

Dr Carrie Ferguson, lecturer in Physiology at the university’s School of Biomedical Sciences, said: “This is about finding ways of exercising that people can actually attain and that maximise health benefits. At the moment, the Government is recommending approximately 30 minutes of moderate intensity activity on most days of the week, but in practice many people find this difficult to achieve.”

The researchers are looking for 75 people aged between 18 and 55 years old, who do less than two hours of exercise a week, are non-smokers and are overweight.

The study will ask volunteers to try two alternative interval training regimes that will require less of a time commitment and, the researchers hope, equivalent or greater health benefits.

Dr Ferguson added: “In today’s world, people are very busy and finding a big block of time to do exercise most days of the week can be very hard.

“Our laboratory results indicate that the shorter interval training regime may work better, but this study will test whether it works in the real world.”

Volunteers will undergo a fitness test before being given heart rate monitors and following one of three exercise regimes.

At the end of 12 weeks, they will undertake another fitness test.

To find out more or to take part, hithome@leeds.ac.uk or call 0113 343 1669.

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