An exercise regimen, administered remotely using a wearable device, leads to improvements in body composition and health-related physical fitness, according to a recent study.
“The study revealed that 12 weeks of noncontact exercise intervention improves body composition and health-related physical fitness among adults,” the researchers said. “Wearable technologies encourage individuals to improve their lifestyles by increasing physical activity and achieve the goal of maintaining health in this population.”
At baseline, the 97 enrolled participants (mean age 33.97 years, 56 women) had an average weight of 67.80 kg. Body weight had not significantly changed halfway through the exercise regimen (mean, 67.90 kg) or during the post-test assessment (mean, 67.89 kg). [Phys Act Nutr 2022;26:32-36]
Similarly, body mass index was not significantly affected by the device-delivered exercise program from pretest to middle-test to post-test (mean, 24.28 to 24.43 to 24.29 kg/m2). The same was true for fat mass (mean, 18.63 to 18.49 to 18.35 kg).
However, body composition, as measured by the bioelectrical impedance analysis, significantly improved during the course of the exercise regimen. Percent body fat dropped from 27.46 percent at baseline to 27.13 percent halfway through the program and to 26.93 percent during the post-test assessment (F-value, 4.993; p<0.05).
A similar beneficial impact was reported for fat-free mass, which grew from 49.16 kg at baseline to 49.41 kg and 49.91 kg at the middle-test and post-test, respectively (F-value, 4.690; p=0.024). The exercise program also significantly improved skeletal muscle mass (27.31 to 27.46 to 27.53 kg; F-value, 5.623; p<0.01).
Beyond body composition, the exercise program conferred significant beneficial effects on several measures of physical fitness. For instance, handgrip strength had a baseline average of 31.03 kg and improved to 31.86 kg during the middle-test and further to 32.91 kg at the post-test. The resulting F-value of 12.167 was highly statistically significant (p<0.001).
The exercise program also led to a significant improvement in sit-and-reach (mean, 9.24 to 9.80 to 11,21 cm; F-value, 20.497; p<0.001) and sit-ups (mean, 24.01 to 25.81 to 28.34; F-value, 42.107; p<0.001).
After the 12-week regimen, participants showed significantly better oxygen consumption, which increased from 30.96 mL/kg/min at baseline to 32.16 and 32.31 mL/kg/min during the middle-test and post-test, respectively (F-value, 4.311; p<0.05).
“Digital healthcare technology has been developing rapidly in recent years, with various health-promoting equipment being developed,” the researchers said, pointing out that such advancements include the emergence of wearable devices which can be used to motivate users to boost their physical activity levels. These technologies include smartphones, fitness trackers, wristbands, and applications.
The health benefits of these technological advancements were confirmed in the present study, “which used exercise prescription and monitoring with smart tracker and mobile phone applications and obtained positive results in terms of health-related physical fitness,” they added.