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Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2013 Feb;23(1):121-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2011.01335.x. Epub 2011 Jun 2.

Effect of block-periodized exercise training on bone and coronary heart disease risk factors in early post-menopausal women: a randomized controlled study.

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  • 1Institute of Medical Physics, University of Erlangen, Erlangen, Germany.


The purpose of this 12 month randomized exercise intervention was to determine the effect of a block-periodized multipurpose exercise program on bone mineral density (BMD) and parameters of the metabolic syndrome (MetS) in early post-menopausal women. Eighty-five subjects (52.3 ± 2.4 years) living in the area of Erlangen (Germany) were randomly assigned into an exercise (EG, n=43) or a wellness-control group (CG: n=42). The EG performed a periodized multipurpose exercise program with 4-6-week blocks of high-intensity bone-specific exercise intermitted by 10-12 weeks of exercise dedicated to increase endurance and reduce cardiac and metabolic risk factors. The CG performed a low-volume/low-intensity "wellness" program to increase well-being. After 12 months, significant exercise effects were observed for the lumbar spine (LS) BMD as assessed by quantitative computed tomography [total BMD (EG: -0.3 ± 2.1% vs CG: -2.1 ± 2.2%, P=0.015); trabecular BMD (EG: -0.7 ± 3.4% vs CG: -4.7 ± 4.9%, P=0.001) and dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) (EG: -0.1 ± 2.2% vs CG: -2.0 ± 2.0%, P=0.002)]. However, no significant effects were observed for total hip BMD as assessed by DXA (P=0.152). Although all MetS parameters were favorably affected among the EG, only the effect for waist circumference was significant. In summary, short periods of bone-specific intervention embedded in longer periods of exercises dedicated to improve cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors positively affected BMD at the LS.

© 2011 John Wiley & Sons A/S.

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