Fitness Expert Lorna Kleidman Comments on Study Recommending Short Bursts of Exercise

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Kettlebell champion Lorna Kleidman responds to a recent study from Boston University which found that short bursts of exercise are still beneficial.

On February 19, 2013, Lorna Kleidman responds to a recent study conducted at Boston University, recommending kettlebell exercises as a convenient option for fun, short-interval workouts.

A recent article in BU Today outlines the results of a study that examined whether a week’s worth of exercise can still be effective when completed in small bursts of activity shorter than 10 minutes. “Conventional medical wisdom preaches 150 minutes of exercise a week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more, for sound heart health,” says the article. In fact, the research indicates that “meeting that weekly quota with exercise stretches of less than 10 minutes, including everyday activities like cleaning, can keep you trimmer and healthier as well.”

150 minutes a week can seem like a lot to some people, acknowledges Nicole Glazer, the lead researcher in the study. “But this study really speaks to the idea that some activity is better than nothing. Parking a little bit farther away, getting off the bus one stop early—all of these little things can add up and are related to a healthier profile.”

“More than half the 2,109 subjects were overweight,” says the article. “The scientists attached accelerometers (motion detectors) to each of them for eight days: 56 percent of the men and 47 percent of the women met their weekly exercise quota. But while some did so with the prescribed 10-or-more-minute exercise sessions, the average subject met the quota with significant amounts of activities that were shorter than 10 minutes.”

According to the article, the researchers found that all those who reached the quota and exercised 150 minutes a week had lowered body mass indexes, improved cholesterol and lower triglycerides compared to the subjects who didn’t complete the weekly exercise quote. The significant finding is that this holds true irrespective of how long the subjects exercised -- the results were positive even for those who worked out for less than 10 minutes. It was previously thought that such short bursts of exercise were not particularly helpful, suggests the article.

Fitness expert Lorna Kleidman responds to the results. “In a nation as sedentary as ours, many will be glad to hear that they can trim down by starting with small, manageable steps. You definitely don’t need to spend hours a week at the gym.” Kleidman cautions, however, that couch potatoes shouldn’t see the findings as an excuse not to exercise. “The take-away point from this study shouldn’t be that we can afford to be lazy about exercising. We can’t. We should, however, feel encouraged to see that fitness can be integrated into a busy lifestyle. Moving your body around is good for it – period. Take small steps to make your regular activities more challenging, and try out new exercises that can be adapted to short-interval routines, like kettlebells or aerobics.”

Lorna Kleidman is a Three-Time World Champion and World Record holder in kettlebell sport and the most decorated kettlebell athlete in the country. She developed the innovative methods used in KettleX as a way to bring the benefits of the bells to everyone in an easy-to-use, comprehensive and fun format. Lorna has been teaching individuals and group classes for the past six years.


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