Effect of Nordic Walking and Water Aerobics Training on Body Composition and the Blood Flow in Lower Extremities in Elderly Women

Open access


Nordic walking and water aerobics are very popular forms of physical activity in the elderly population. The aim of the study was to evaluate the influence of regular health training on the venous blood flow in lower extremities and body composition in women over 50 years old. Twenty-four women of mean age 57.9 (± 3.43) years, randomly divided into three groups (Nordic walking, water aerobics, and non-training), participated in the study. The training lasted 8 weeks, with one-hour sessions twice a week. Dietary habits were not changed. Before and after training vein refilling time and the function of the venous pump of the lower extremities were measured by photoplethysmography. Body composition was determined by bioelectrical impedance. Eight weeks of Nordic walking training improved the venous blood flow in lower extremities and normalized body composition in the direction of reducing chronic venous disorder risk factors. The average values of the refilling time variable (p = 0.04, p = 0.02, respectively) decreased in both the right and the left leg. After training a statistically significant increase in the venous pump function index was found only in the right leg (p = 0.04). A significant increase in fat-free mass, body cell mass and total body water was observed (p = 0.01), whereas body mass, the body mass index, and body fat decreased (p < 0.03). With regard to water aerobic training, no similar changes in the functions of the venous system or body composition were observed.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Abe T Kearns CF Sato Y. Muscle size and strength are increased following walk training with restricted venous blood flow from the leg muscle Kaatsu-walk training. J Appl Physiol 2006; 100: 1460-1466

  • Ainsworth BE Haskell WL Herrmann SD Meckes N Bassett JrDR Tudor-Locke C Greer JL Vezina J Whitt-Glover MC Leon AS. Compendium of physical activities: a second update of codes and MET values. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2011; 43: 1575-1581

  • Barbosa TM Marinho DA Reis VM Silva AJ Bragada JA. Physiological assessment of head-out aquatic exercises in healthy subjects: A qualitative review. J Sport Sci Med 2009; 8: 179-189

  • Callejas JM Manasanch J. Epidemiology of chronic venous insufficiency of the lower limbs in the primary care setting. Int Angiol 2004; 23: 154-63

  • Figard-Fabre H Fabre N Leonardi A Schena F. Efficacy of Nordic walking in obesity management. Int J Sports Med 2011; 32: 407-414

  • Fritz T Caidahl K Krook A Lundström P Mashili F Osler M Szekeres FL Östenson CG Wändell P Zierath JR. Effects of Nordic walking on cardiovascular risk factors in overweight individuals with type 2 diabetes impaired or normal glucose tolerance. Diabetes Metab Res Rev 2013; 29: 25-32

  • Gram B Christensen R Christiansen C Gram J. Effects of nordic walking and exercise in type 2 diabetes mellitus: a randomized controlled trial. Clin J Sport Med 2010; 20: 355-361

  • Iida H Nakajima T Kurano M Yasuda T Sakamaki M Sato Y Yamasoba T Abe T. Effects of walking with blood flow restriction on limb venous compliance in elderly subjects. Clin Physiol Funct Imaging 2011; 31: 472-476

  • Jawień A Grzela T Ochwat A. Prevalence of chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) in men and women of Poland. Multicenter cross-sectional study of 40095 patients. Phlebology 2003; 3: 110-122

  • Kan YM Delis KT. Hemodynamic effects of supervised calf muscle exercise in patients with venous leg ulceration - a prospective controlled study. Arch Surg 2001; 136: 1364-1369

  • Kanchanabat B Wongmahisorn Y Stapanavatr W Kanchanasuttirak P Manomaiphiboon A. Clinical presentation and patterns of venous reflux in Thai patients with chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). Eur J Vasc Endovasc Surg 2010; 40: 399-402

  • Kelechi TJ Bonham PA. Measuring venous insufficiency objectively in the clinical setting. J Vasc Nurs 2008; 26: 67-73. doi: 10.1016/j.jvn.2008.05.002

  • Kortmann T Schumacher G. Physical activity in obesity and overweight. Ther Umsch 2013; 70: 113-117

  • Kravitz L Mayo JJ. The physiological effects of aquatic exercise: A brief review. Nokomis Fl. Aquatic Exercise Association /on line/ 1997. Available at: http://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Pages/articles.html accessed on 08.03.2014

  • Lee IM Shiroma EJ Lobelo F Puska P Blair SN Katzmarzyk PT. Effect of physical inactivity on major noncommunicable diseases worldwide: an analysis of burden of disease and life expectancy. Lancet 2012; 21: 219-229. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(12) 61031-9

  • Lejczak A Wilczyński J Jasiński R Rudzińska E Węgrzynowska-Teodorczyk K Josiak K Jankowska EA BanasiakW Ponikowski P Woźniewski M. 12-week Nordic walking training improves physical fitness and quality of life in patients with systolic heart failure. Eur Heart J 2011; 32: 612

  • Mikalacki M Radjo I Cokorilo N Korovljev D Smajic M. Influence of Nordic walking on body composition of elderly women. Health Med 2012; 6: 476-482

  • Morgulec-Adamowicz N Marszałek J Jagustyn P. Nordic walking- a new form of adapted physical activity (a literature review). Hum Mov 2011; 12: 124-132

  • Nuttamonwarakul A Amatyakul S Suksom D. Twelve weeks of aqua-aerobic exercise improve physiological adaptations and glycemic control in elderly patients with type 2 diabetes. JEPonline 2012; 15: 64-70

  • Oganov RG Savel'ev VS Shal'nova SA Kirienko AI Zolotukhin IA. Risk factors of chronic venous insufficiency of the lower extremities and possibilities of its medication in therapeutic practice. Ter Arkh 2006; 78: 68-72

  • Padberg FJr Cerveira JJ Lal BK Pappas PJ Varma S Hobson RW. Does severe venous insufficiency have a different etiology in the morbidly obese? Is it venous? J Vasc Surg 2003; 37: 79-85

  • Padberg FJr Johnston MV Sisto SA. Structured exercise improves calf muscle pump function in chronic venous insufficiency: a randomized trial. J Vasc Surg 2004; 39: 79-87

  • Panny M Ammer K Kundi M Katzenschlager R Hirschl M. Severity of chronic venous disorders and its relationship to the calf muscle pump. Vasa 2009; 38: 171-176

  • Parkatti T Perttunen J Wacker P. Improvements in functional capacity from Nordic walking: a randomizedcontrolled trial among elderly people. J Aging Phys Act 2012; 20: 93-105

  • Purzycka D Prusik K Bohdan M Sroka T Włodarczyk P Marczulin J Drewek K Prusik K Wyrzykowski B Zdrojewski T. Effect of 3-month Nordic walking training on arterial blood pressure in women aged 60 years and over. Arterial Hypertension 2011; 15: 335-340

  • Raffaelli C Galvani C Lanza M Zamparo P. Different methods for monitoring intensity during water-based aerobic exercises. Eur J Appl Physiol 2012; 112: 125-134. doi: 10.1007/s00421-011-1963-7. Epub 2011 Apr 19.

  • Reis Filho AD Amorim PD Pazdziora AZ Santini E Coelho-Ravagnani CF Voltarelli FA. Eff ect of 12 weeks of water aerobics on capillary glycemia among individuals with type II diabetes mellitus. Rev Bras Ativ Fis e Saúde 2012; 17: 252-257

  • Śliwicka E Pilaczyńska-Szcześniak Ł Nowak A Karolkiewicz J Piechowiak A. HOMAIR during an oral glucose tolerance test in women participating in recreational activities in the water. 6th National Scientific Conference on Nutrition-Movement-Health June 14-16 Poznań-Poland Polish J Sport Med 2007; 23: 51

  • Stief F Kleindienst FI Wiemeyer J Wedel F Campe S Krabbe B. Inverse dynamic analysis of the lower extremities during nordic walking walking and running. J Appl Biomech 2008; 24: 351-359

  • Sudoł-Szopińska I Błachowiak K Koziński P. Influence of environmental risk factors on the development of chronic vein insufficiency. Med Pr 2006; 57: 365-373

  • Turk Z Vidensek S Micetic Turk D. Nordic walking: a new form of physical activity in the elderly. Acta Med Croatica 2007; 61: 33-36

  • Willenberg T Schumacher A Amann-Vesti B Jacomella V Thalhammer C Diehm N Baumgartner I Husmann M. Impact of obesity on venous hemodynamics of the lower limbs. J Vasc Surg 2010; 52: 664-668

Journal information
Impact Factor

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 1.414
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 1.858

CiteScore 2018: 1.60

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.644
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.941

Cited By
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 432 176 2
PDF Downloads 213 70 0