Abstract 1382: Effects of Recreational Dance Exercise on Vascular Structure and Function in Older Women
Objective. Aging has a negative effect on large elastic artery structure and function which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Although a number of studies suggest that exercise is associated with enhanced vascular function in men, little is known about the effect of exercise on vascular structure and function in older women. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of a novel exercise program on vascular structure/function, traditional CVD risk factors and cardiorespiratory fitness in 23 older women (age 63±4 yrs).
Methods. Subjects were randomly assigned to a dance-exercise group (n=12) and a non-exercise control group (n=11). The subjects in the exercise group performed supervised recreational dance exercise with moderate intensity (40 – 60% of heart rate reserve) for 12 weeks, 60 minutes per session, 3 times per week. Body composition, lipid profiles, insulin resistance (HOMA index), C-reactive protein, and cardiorespiratory fitness were measured at baseline and after 12 weeks intervention. Also, brachial artery flow mediated vasodilatation (FMD), common carotid artery intima media thickness (IMT) and carotid distensibility were measured using B-mode ultrasound.
Results. There were no group differences in all variables between the exercise group and the control groups at baseline. After the 3 month intervention, body composition, blood pressure and lipid profiles did not significantly change in the exercise group compared with the control. However, C-reactive protein (1.66±0.6 to 1.19±0.7 mg/L, p<0.05) and HOMA index (0.55±0.3 to 0.38±0.2, p<0.05) were significantly improved in the exercise group. Also, cardiorespiratory fitness (22.3±3.3 to 25.2±5.0 ml/kg/min, p<0.05) and carotid artery distensibility (0.02±0.01 to 0.04±0.02 1/kPa, p<0.05) were significantly increased in the exercise group, while there were no significant changes in mean IMT (0.77±0.15 to 0.75±0.16mm, p=0.635) and FMD (8.94±5.4 to 9.94±5.3%, p=0.402) in the exercise group.
Conclusions. These data indicate that recreational dance exercise reduces CRP and improves cardiorespiratory fitness, insulin sensitivity and carotid artery function in older women and these effects are not dependent on changes in traditional CVD risk factors.