Slow exercise beneficial for menopausal women


Washington : Scientists seeking to delay or reduce age-related muscle deterioration in menopausal women are examining the effects of different exercise regimes.

Support TwoCircles

Alexander Sänger’s research group from University of Salzburg has investigated two such methods. Hypertrophy resistance training is a traditional approach designed to induce muscle growth and ‘SuperSlow(r)’ which involves much slower movement and fewer repetitions of exercises.

“Our results indicate that both methods increase muscle mass at the expense of connective and fatty tissue, but contrary to expectations, the SuperSlow(r) method appears to have the greatest effect,” revealed Sänger.

“These findings will be used to design specific exercise programmes for everyday use to reduce the risk of injury and thus significantly contribute to a better quality of life in old age.”

The study focussed on groups of menopausal women aged 45-55 years, the age group in which muscle deterioration first starts to become apparent.

Groups undertook supervised regimes over 12 weeks, based on each of the training methods. Thigh muscle biopsies were taken at the beginning and end of the regimes, and microscopically analysed to look for changes in the ratio of muscle to fatty and connective tissue, the blood supply to the muscle.

“The results of our experiments have significantly improved our understanding of how muscles respond to different forms of exercise,” asserted Sänger.

“We believe that the changes that this new insight can bring to current training systems will have a considerable effect on the lives of both menopausal and older women,” she concludes.

These results were presented on Monday at the Society for Experimental Biology’s Annual Meeting in Marseille.