Impact of Aerobic Physical Exercise on Cardiovascular Health of In-school Adolescents of Nepalgunj, Nepal

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJPH.2013.08.02.Art032

Authors : Manita Pyakurel, Nnodimele O. Atulomah, Archana Shrestha


Background: Physical activities and exercise play supportive role in preventing cardiovascular morbidity. Long-term exercise provides more health benefits. Contemporary society are plagued with increasing inactivity and obesity particularly among children and adolescents. Studies demonstrate benefits of moderate but consistent aerobic exercise on cardiovascular health, however roles of physical exercise on components of cardiovascular health CVH)-related parameters still remain unclear. This study investigated the effect of aerobic physical exercise on (CVH-related) parameters among in-school adolescents in Nepalgunj municipality, Banke, Nepal.

Methodology: This was an eight-week quasi-experimental design conducted by systematic random selection of consenting 8th and 9th graders assigned into intervention and control groups by odd and even number randomization, respectively. Measures of CVH-related parameters were anthropometry while demographic characteristics were collected using validated questionnaire. Data analysis was conducted, and results displayed as frequency, means and standard deviation with paired-sample t-test for test of significance at 5% level.

Results: At baseline, physical education and physical exercise groups showed no significant difference in most CVH-related parameters, except resting-Heart Rate that was significantly different (p<0.01). Impact of physical exercise on CVH-related parameters was significant for three CVH-related parameters of resting-HR (ES=0.56; p<0.001), BMI (ES=0.474; p<0.05), DBP (ES=0.355; p<0.05), but physical education only impacted on CVH-related parameters of resting-HR (ES=0.64; p<0.001).

Conclusion: Aerobic physical exercise implemented among in-school adolescents produced marginal but important changes in CVH-related parameters among in-school adolescents in the study despite the short duration of the intervention. The study recommends that physical exercise should be made part of school curriculum activities.


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