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Effect of aerobic exercise training on peak expiratory flow rate: a pragmatic randomized controlled trial

Authors:Chaitra B , Vijay Maitri
Int J Biol Med Res. 2011; 2(3): 789-792  |  PDF File


ABSTRCT Background Aerobic exercise is an important component of pulmonary rehabilitation for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). There are few studies on aerobic exercise and pulmonary function in general population. This study was carried out to explore the effect of aerobics on pulmonary function in general population. Aim To evaluate the effect of aerobic exercise training on Peak Expiratory Flow Rate (PEFR) in healthy volunteers. Methods We recruited eighty, apparently healthy medical students of either sex, aged 17-20 years. Randomisation into experimental and control groups (40 each), was carried out with a table of random numbers. Experimental group participated in a 16 weeks aerobic exercise plan (five 20 minute sessions of jogging in a week), while control group had no plan of exercise during that period of time. PEFR was recorded by computerised spirometer, before the commencement of training and at the end of 4 months in both the groups. Student’s paired‘t’ test (2 tail) was applied to compare the pre and post training values of both the groups. Statistics were tested at the p<0.05 level of significance and data were reported as mean±standard deviation. Results At baseline, PEFR (L/min) values of experimental and control group were 437.8±64 (mean±S.D.) and 429.7±53 respectively. After 4 months of aerobics training, the PEFR values in experimental and control groups were 512.9±62 (P=0.007), and 431.5±59 (P=0.491) respectively. There was 17% improvement in PEFR in experimental group after the training. Conclusion We conclude that aerobic exercise training leads to improvement in pulmonary function in healthy subjects; and thus provides further support for the aerobic exercise being an important component of pulmonary rehabilitation. The health care community should better recognize aerobics as a complement to conventional medical care; thus lead to better and improved treatments of COPD.