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Effect of yoga on exercise-induced cardiovascular responses in normotensive individuals

Narayan Khurde, Pawan Goyal, Chintan Parmar, Vishnu D Udhan.

Background: Yoga is acclaimed for its diverse health benefits. Various studies confirm its positive impact on cardiovascular (CV) health and fitness. However, there is an extreme paucity in data pertaining to CV responses to exercise following long-term yogic practice with larger sample size.

Aim and Objective: The present study was undertaken to evaluate the CV responses to exercise after long-term yogic practice in normotensive individuals.

Materials and Methods: This preand post-yoga interventional single cohort study was conducted on normotensive healthy individuals (n = 200). Exercise-induced change in heart rate (HR), systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) was evaluated before and after 6 months yoga practice. Modified Harvard step test (HST) was used as an exercise tool. The data were analyzed and compared by SPSS and paired t-test, respectively. For statistical significance, P-value was established at 5%.

Results: Post-yogic HR was significantly higher (P < 0.0001), while post-yogic SBP and DBP after HST were significantly (P < 0.0001) declined compared to their respective baseline value.

Conclusion: Results show the effectiveness of yogic training in modulating CV responses to exercise. Reduction of blood pressures is suggestive of increased CV tolerance to exercise. Yoga may be considered as a potent preventive measure for future CV diseases).

Key words: Yoga; Harvard Step Test; Heart Rate; Blood Pressure; Cardiovascular Tolerance

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