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Blood Pressure Climbing? Try Upping Your Swim Workouts to 3x a Week

Pat Duggan - Monday, February 06, 2012

Blood Pressure Climbing? Try Upping Your Swim Workouts to 3X a Week

New research finds that older adults who swam three to four times a week dropped
their systolic blood pressure—that’s the top number—by an average of nine points.

The University of Texas study involved 43 men and women who were unmedicated, over the age of 50, sedentary, but otherwise healthy.  All had either pre-hypertension or Stage 1 high blood pressure.

(Normal blood pressure is no higher than 120/80, high blood pressure starts at 140/90 and pre-hypertension is considered anything in between.)

Participants were randomly divided into two groups: one with supervised swim workouts, the other, being taught relaxation exercises. By the end of three months, the swimmers showed significant improvements, both in systolic blood pressure and in artery stiffness, while the numbers didn’t budge in the other group.

This research is believed to be the first to demonstrate that swimming can improve blood vessel function in older adults.

Source: American Journal of Cardiology, January 11, 2012

Filed under: Health and Nutrition


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