Do vibrations beat exercise?

Scientists suggests the benefits of whole-body vibration could be similar to those of regular exercise

Running in autumn

According to a recent study, sitting or laying down on a vibrating platform could be as effective as taking part in regular exercise.

That’s right, scientists at Augusta University believe that whole-body vibration might provide similar benefits to cycling, hiking and other activities.

The unique discovery was made after researchers experimented on mice, and found that vibration helped to maintain muscle and bone health.

Lead researcher Meghan McGee-Lawrence believes it’s an exciting original finding, but one that is still some way off being conclusive.

“Our study is the first to show that whole-body vibration may be just as effective as exercise at combating some of the negative consequences of obesity and diabetes,” she claims.

“However, because our study was conducted in mice, this idea needs to be rigorously tested in humans to see if the results would be applicable to people.”

The news may not be life changing (yet), but it does go to show that a body can perform and work harder in numerous ways.

The mice were made to spend 20 minutes on a whole-body vibration machine every day for three months, or walk on a treadmill for 45 minutes on a slight incline.

Both walking and whole-body vibration led to enhanced muscle mass and insulin sensitivity in obese mice, but not in young and healthy mice.

Vibration plates and muscle stimulators can already be found in most fitness and sports shops, but many people question their effectiveness.

So while the news may seem exciting, it might not be time to substitute the trainers for a new, shakier tumble dryer just yet.

Written by Josh Puttock | 22 articles | View profile

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