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Impact of a community-based exercise programme on physical fitness in middle-aged and older patients with type 2 diabetes.

Research paper by Romeu R Mendes, Nelson N Sousa, José J Themudo-Barata, Victor V Reis

Indexed on: 24 Feb '16Published on: 24 Feb '16Published in: Gaceta Sanitaria



Abstract

Physical fitness is related to all-cause mortality, quality of life and risk of falls in patients with type 2 diabetes. This study aimed to analyse the impact of a long-term community-based combined exercise program (aerobic+resistance+agility/balance+flexibility) developed with minimum and low-cost material resources on physical fitness in middle-aged and older patients with type 2 diabetes.This was a non-experimental pre-post evaluation study. Participants (N=43; 62.92±5.92 years old) were engaged in a community-based supervised exercise programme (consisting of combined aerobic, resistance, agility/balance and flexibility exercises; three sessions per week; 70min per session) of 9 months' duration. Aerobic fitness (6-Minute Walk Test), muscle strength (30-Second Chair Stand Test), agility/balance (Timed Up and Go Test) and flexibility (Chair Sit and Reach Test) were assessed before (baseline) and after the exercise intervention.Significant improvements in the performance of the 6-Minute Walk Test (Δ=8.20%, p<0.001), 30-Second Chair Stand Test (Δ=28.84%, p<0.001), Timed Up and Go Test (Δ=14.31%, p<0.001), and Chair Sit and Reach Test (Δ=102.90%, p<0.001) were identified between baseline and end-exercise intervention time points.A long-term community-based combined exercise programme, developed with low-cost exercise strategies, produced significant benefits in physical fitness in middle-aged and older patients with type 2 diabetes. This supervised group exercise programme significantly improved aerobic fitness, muscle strength, agility/balance and flexibility, assessed with field tests in community settings.