[WHAT'S THE BUZZ?] Whole body EMS may boost physical health
Physical training plus whole body electronic muscle stimulation (WB-EMS) yielded better results than training alone in a small pilot study conducted by Mayo Clinic researchers and presented at the recent American Heart Association Scientific Sessions. WB-EMS training is a US Food and Drug Administration-cleared technology that offers a customizable method for physical training by simultaneously stimulating the body's main muscle groups using percutaneous electrical impulse transmission.
While preliminary findings have shown increased muscle mass, reduced fat mass, and improved body function in sedentary older adults, studies evaluating the role WB-EMS in cardiovascular health are lacking.
To help fill the gap, the researchers randomly assigned 24 adults to physical training with WB-EMS and 17 to physical training alone. Although the device is positioned for older adults, the mean age of study participants was 36 (±11.2 years); 61% were women, and the median BMI was 24.3.
After 16 weeks of once-weekly training, significant differences were seen in waist:hip ratio ( -1.2 cm with WB-EMS vs. 0.9 cm without); total cholesterol ( -1.1 mg/kg with WB-EMS vs. 14.2 mg/kg without), anaerobic threshold (68.2% with WB-EMS vs. 30.8% without), breathing efficiency (-10.36 with WB-EMS vs -7.38 without, less being more efficient) and peripheral endothelial function.
Additionally, biomechanical testing data showed a 20% increase in rate of Force and a 25% increase in maximum force with WB-EMS.
To read the poster abstract, click here
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