Squats Can Be Effective In Reducing Hypertension, Study Shows

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Static isometric exercises, such as planks or wall sits, are found to be highly effective in lowering blood pressure, according to research from the University of Leicester and Canterbury Christ Church University. These exercises engage and tire out muscle groups without requiring movement, making them beneficial for managing hypertension.

Exercising can be effective for hypertension management

The study highlights various effective exercises for hypertension, including aerobic exercise, dynamic resistance training (such as squats and weights), and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). These activities offer varying degrees of benefits.

According to the study there is need to reassess current exercise guidelines for high blood pressure prevention and treatment. Previous research highlights the positive impact of general workouts on reducing blood pressure, with a focus on cardio exercises such as running, walking, and cycling.

The recommendation may be outdated as it relies on old data and does not consider newer forms of exercise such as HIIT and isometric exercise. Therefore, current guidelines might not be up-to-date.

Researchers conducted a comprehensive search for clinical trials on exercise’s impact on blood pressure. They analysed various exercise forms, including aerobic, dynamic resistance training, HIIT, and isometric exercises. Resting blood pressure categories were defined, and systolic and diastolic measurements were explained.

Squats and running can reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure

A review of 270 randomized controlled trials, spanning from 1990 to February 2023, involved 15,827 participants. The analysis revealed that all categories of exercise led to reductions in resting systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Isometric exercise training showed the most significant drops, with blood pressure reductions of 8.24/4 mmHg. Other exercises resulted in lower reductions: aerobic (4.49/2.53 mmHg), dynamic resistance (4.55/3.04 mmHg), combined training (6.04/2.54 mmHg), and HIIT (4.08/2.50 mmHg).

In the analysis, wall squats and running were found to be the most effective exercises for reducing systolic and diastolic blood pressure by 90.5% and 91% respectively. Isometric exercise, in general, was observed to be the most effective for lowering both elements of blood pressure. The authors of the study acknowledge that differences in participant types, statistical methods, and exercise interventions in the included trials may have influenced these findings.

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