Experts say it’s about how often you exercise, not how much | World News

New research has suggested that frequency of exercise rather than single long sessions is more beneficial for your health.

Experts have tried to find out whether a little activity every day is better than a lot of exercise in fewer sessions.

A sports science professor said the work found that “if you only go to the gym once a week, it’s not as effective as doing a bit of exercise every day at home”.

The four-week training study also found that “just lowering a dumbbell slowly one to six times a day” is more beneficial than long stints in the gym.

Research from Edith Cowan University (ECU) in Australia in collaboration with Niigata University and Nishikyushu University in Japan saw three groups of participants perform arm resistance exercises.

The volunteers performed 30 biceps contractions on a machine each week. One group did six contractions a day for five days; another piled up 30 in one day. Another group performed only six contractions a week.

Changes in muscle strength and thickness were compared between all participants.

The group that spread the activity out over five days saw the biggest increase in muscle strength — an increase of more than 10 percent.

ECU exercise and sport science professor Ken Nosaka said, “People think they have to do a long resistance training session in the gym, but that’s not the case.

“Just lowering a heavy dumbbell slowly one to six times a day is enough.

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“Muscle strength is important for our health. This could help prevent a decline in muscle mass and strength with aging.

“A decrease in muscle mass is a cause of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, dementia, as well as musculoskeletal problems such as osteoporosis.

“Muscle adaptations happen when we’re resting; if someone could somehow train 24 hours a day, there wouldn’t actually be any improvement.”

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