Studies: Vibration training can help with overweight and obesity

The researchers at Augusta University found that the use of vibration plates or so-called whole body vibration training achieved the advantages of regular movement in mice. The physicians published the results of their study in the journal "Endocrinology".

Is so-called whole-body vibration training just as effective in combating the negative effects of obesity as conventional training on the treadmill? Experts were now trying to clarify this question through a study.(Image: tortoon / fotolia.com)

What is whole body vibration training?
So-called whole-body vibration training is performed sitting or standing on devices with a vibration platform. When the machine starts to vibrate, it transmits energy to the body. As a result, the muscles of the affected person contract and relax several times per second, say the researchers.

Physical activity reduces negative metabolic effects
Many people find it difficult to exercise regularly. The lack of exercise, however, increases the risk of obesity and diabetes, the experts explain. According to the researchers, such diseases can also increase the risk of bone fractures. Physical activity can help reduce this risk and reduce the negative metabolic effects.

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Vibration training helps against negative effects of obesity and diabetes
Whole body vibration training can achieve the health benefits of regular movement for muscles and bones, at least in tests in mice, say the scientists. Our study shows that whole-body vibration training can be as effective as normal training when it comes to combating some of the negative effects of obesity and diabetes, author Dr. Meghan E. McGee-Lawrence from Augusta University.

Long-term training appears to reduce bone loss
While training on vibration devices was not able to compensate for deficiencies in the bone mass of obese mice, it resulted in increased bone formation. This suggests that longer-term treatments could stop a bone loss, the scientists explain.

mice were divided into three groups
For the study, the researchers studied two groups of five week old male mice. One group consisted of normal mice while the other group was genetically unresponsive to the hormone leptin. This hormone mediates after eating a sense of saturation, the experts say. Mice from both groups were assigned to either a sedentary group, a treadmill group, or a vibrator group.

How were the mice trained exactly?
After a one-week period of familiarization, the mice began a twelve-week exercise program. One group trained 20 minutes every day on vibrators at a frequency of 32 Hz. Mice in the tread group went 45 minutes a day on a treadmill with a slight incline. The third group did not do any exercises, the doctors say. The mice were then weighed weekly to assess the effects of the training.

Effects of training
The genetically-obese and diabetic mice showed similar metabolic benefits from exercise on a treadmill and training on vibration devices. The obese mice scored a higher weight loss through the exercises than the sedentary mice, the authors say. Nevertheless, the exercising mice remained heavier than normal mice. The training on the treadmill and on vibratory devices increased the muscle mass and the insulin sensitivity in the obese mice.

Further research is needed
However, there was no significant effect on young healthy mice. These results suggest that vibratory device training can be a useful complementary therapy to combat metabolic dysfunction in people with diseased obesity, the scientists say. These results are encouraging. Since our study was carried out in mice, the results obtained in humans must be strictly tested, author Dr. McGee-Lawrence added.(as)

Study Investigates the Impacts of Exercises on Vibrating Devices
Many people are driving sports to keep their body healthy and fit and avoid the onset of overweight. Researchers are now investigating whether a less strenuous form of exercise, which uses so-called vibration plates, leads to similar health benefits.

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