Take an exercise snack – research

Jordan et. al. (2016)

30 people were recruited for this research – they are called the ‘participants’. They were all healthy, but ‘sedentary’ – this means they did not do any regular exercise during the day.

The researchers got them to take part in three different ‘conditions’ on different days:

  1. In the first condition the participants had to sit for 6 hours. During this time they were allowed to read, use a computer and watch TV.
  2. The second condition was the same as above except that the participants were instructed to carry out 30 minutes of moderate-intensity walking in the morning.
  3. In the third condition, the participants were instructed to take six ‘exercise snacks’ to break up the six-hour sitting period. These were five-minute walks every hour across the six hours.
  • Both the 30-minute walk and the 5-minute exercise-snack walks resulted in participants reporting increased energy levels at the end of the day
  • However, unlike the other conditions, the 5-minute exercise snack walks also improved mood and reduced food cravings at the end of the day
  • Short bursts of activity during the workday is a promising approach to improve overall wellbeing

If you want to read the full report on this study, you can find it here.