New study by Bente Stallknecht’s group has received a lot of coverage
According to a new study by Bente Stallknecht’s research group, riding the bike to work is just as effective as leisure time exercise. The result of the study has received a lot of media coverage.
A new study entitled “Effects of active commuting and leisure-time exercise on fat loss in women and men with overweight and obesity: A randomized controlled trial” has shown that biking to and from work is at least as effective to reduce fat mass as exercise in leisure time.
The study involved 130 overweight people with a BMI of 25-35 kg/m2. A criterion for participating in the study was that the participants were not too active or muscular based on a series of parameters like body fat percentage, maximum oxygen uptake and level of physical activity.
The participants were divided into four groups of which one had to ride the bike to and from work. Two other groups had to do physical exercise five times a week, one a high intensity, the other at moderate intensity. The last group could make no changes and thus functioned as the control group.
The groups that cycled and were physically active during their leisure time burned the same amount of calories a week during these activities; only the intensity and form of physical exercise varied. Throughout the test – using heart rate monitors, among other things – the researchers checked that the participants met the requirements and did the physical exercise they were asked to do.
“This is good news to the many overweight people who may not have the time or inclination to join a fitness centre, because they also have to pick up their children and cook dinner after work. Our results show that it is possible to combine transport to and from work with effective physical exercise”, says Professor and Head of Department Bente Stallknecht.