University sports research for the elderly


The effects of regular exercise in old age on health were studied by the Sports Science Coordination Institute of the University of Debrecen (DESKI). In the six-week study, the condition of volunteers over seventy-five years of age was monitored using special diagnostic tools.
At the international level, a number of studies have previously dealt with how much and how older people should move in order to spend as much time as possible healthy. DESKI’s research focused on the effects of moderate-intensity exercise, including aerobic, cardio and resistance training twice a week, on the nervous system, the delay in dementia, and the loss of muscle strength and muscle mass due to age. sarcopenia and how it affects the immune system.

According to László Balogh, the professional leader of the program, the director of the Coordinating Institute of Sports Science of the University of Debrecen, regular exercise should be given great importance over sixty-five years, this recently completed, “The preventive role of regular physical activity infrastructure for the development of biological research ”.

– In our studies, we compiled two suitable, sixty-minute exercise programs a week, on the one hand, we observed changes in cognitive functions, body composition, increased attention to muscle mass, and how the immune system responds to aerobic and anaerobic exercise. Sixteen participants were selected from the volunteer applicants according to strict criteria, all of whom were women. An important condition was not to exercise or exercise for three months prior to the survey, no special diet was required, but several health problems such as viral, bacterial, autoimmune disease, drug therapy, or psychiatric problems were excluded. At the end of the study, in all parameters, the effect of training against sarcopenia was measured with a special musculoskeletal test, cognitive abilities with a valid computer test system, changes in the immune system with laboratory tests, and a positive change from baseline.

László Balogh added: there is a unique collaboration at the University of Debrecen, the multi- and interdisciplinary nature of the research is strengthened by the fact that, among others, physiotherapists, nutritionists, immunologists, neurologists, coaches, physical educators, sports researchers have worked together in other countries.

The methodology and results of DESKI’s research have also been published in a prestigious international professional journal, 5.5 IF Frontiers in Immunology. The head of the research said that the scientific work also provided an opportunity for the DE to acquire special, state-of-the-art equipment for university professionals to work with.

– These can be used for workouts in which the protection of the musculoskeletal system and joints can be given special attention. With sports and performance diagnostic tools, up to twelve people at a time could monitor their cardiovascular system during an exercise program, or personalize their exercise program. An antigravity treadmill and a bioanalyzer for immune system monitoring and genomic studies were also used. They will all remain on campus so they can be used for further research, he highlighted.

László Balogh said: we managed to show something new compared to the existing international literature, so for example it turned out that at least 150 minutes a week recommended by the American Society of Sports Medicine is not absolutely necessary, but less exercise has a positive effect on the human body. , including even the nervous system, for example, new neurons appear to increase BDNF levels as a result of exercise, the connection between old and new, the number and function of synapses are significantly improved, so you can stay fresh mentally and physically.

In addition to sports science training and further research, the knowledge gained during the research will be available at the DE Fitness Center, UniFit and the Sports Diagnostic, Lifestyle and Therapy Center (SET), so that the elderly can participate in special exercise programs using special equipment.

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