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OBJECTIVE: To examine the efficacy of inspiratory muscle training (IMT) as a non-intrusive and practical intervention to stimulate improved functional fitness in adults with obesity. As excess adiposity of the chest impedes the mechanics of breathing, targeted re-training of the inspiratory muscles may ameliorate sensations of breathlessness, improve physical performance and lead to greater engagement in physical activity.
METHODS: Sixty seven adults (BMI=36 ±6.5) were randomized into either an experimental (EXP: n=35) or placebo (PLA: n=32) group with both groups undertaking a 4-week IMT intervention, comprising daily use of a inspiratory resistance device set to 55% (EXP), or 10% (PLA) of maximum inspiratory effort.
RESULTS: Inspiratory muscle strength was significantly improved in EXP (19.1 cmH20 gain; P<0.01) but did not change in PLA. Additionally, the post training walking distance covered was significantly extended for EXP (P<0.01), but not for PLA. Bivariate analysis demonstrated a positive association between the change (%) of performance in the walking test and BMI (r=0.78; P<0.01) for EXP.
CONCLUSION: The findings from this study suggest IMT provides a practical, self-administered intervention for use in a home setting. This could be a useful strategy to improve the functional fitness of obese adults and perhaps lead to better preparedness for engagement in wider physical activity initiatives.
The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!