PARIS: From walking quickly and taking the dog out to cleaning the house or playing with the kids, people perform tasks on a daily basis that could help save their lives, according to an Australian study.
It’s good news for anyone who hates sport or doesn’t necessarily have time for long workouts. A new study from the University of Sydney, published in the journal “Nature Sciences”, suggests that performing several short, vigorous one-to-two-minute bursts of physical activity each day could reduce the risk of premature death.
And these bursts of activity, performed as part of day-to-day life, are known as Vilpa, which stands for Vigorous Intermittent Lifestyle Physical Activity.
According to the researchers, practising three to four one-minute sessions of Vilpa daily was associated with a 49% reduction in death related to cardiovascular disease and a 40% reduction in all-cause and cancer-related mortality.
The more sessions in a day, the greater the benefits. So, doing 11 sessions per day was associated with a 65% reduction in cardiovascular death risk and 49% reduction in cancer-related death risk.
To conduct the study, researchers focused on the activity of 25,000 participants, who were on average 62 years old and never exercised. The participants were required to wear an activity tracker on their wrists for a period of seven days.
The researchers also used health data that allowed them to follow the participants for seven years.
The advantage of the Vilpa method is that it can easily be incorporated into the daily life of any person. After all, many of the activities or tasks we do in our daily lives can be likened to a form of exercise.
“This could be things like playing with children. It could be [that] you see your bus just about to leave. so you have to walk extremely quickly to catch it. It may be that you live in a block of flats and you have to carry your shopping up a flight of stairs.
“It’s those sorts of little bursts that would happen in everyday life,” explains study co-author and University College London professor Mark Hamer.
“Upping the intensity of daily activities requires no time commitment, no preparation, no club memberships, no special skills. It simply involves stepping up the pace while walking or doing the housework with a bit more energy,” adds Emmanuel Stamatakis, lead author and University of Sydney professor.
In short, it’s a more accessible, all-inclusive, and “natural” – in the sense that it’s just a part of daily life – way of improving one’s health!