Older adults may gain more health benefits from playing golf than participating in regular or Nordic walking, suggests a study published online in the journal BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine.
The health advantages of aerobic exercise in helping to prevent cardiovascular diseases are well documented as part of efforts to stave off high blood pressure, diabetes and dyslipidaemia (an abnormal amount of lipids in the blood causing problems such as high cholesterol).
However, most relevant studies have tended to focus on younger people participating in acute bouts of exercise lasting 30 to 60 minutes at moderate to high intensity with less information available on the impact of exercise on older people.
Golf, walking and Nordic walking—an enhanced walking technique in which people use poles to work their upper body as well as their legs—are popular age-appropriate forms of outdoor aerobic exercise that are safe and easily accessible for many older people.
A team of researchers from Finland set out to compare the acute effects of these three different types of aerobic exercises on markers of cardiometabolic health in terms of intensity, duration and energy expenditure.