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ORIGINAL ARTICLE  EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS 

The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2020 January;60(1):26-31

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.19.09675-0

Copyright © 2019 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Fitness-related benefits: land-based versus aqua-base

Rachel E. WILLIAMS 1 , Tiago V. BARRERIA 2, Wayland TSEH 1

1 School of Health and Applied Human Sciences, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Wilmington, NC, USA; 2 School of Education, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY, USA



BACKGROUND: It is well documented that individuals participating in land-based aerobic activities receive several fitness-related benefits. Given its virtual weightlessness, thermoregulatory comfort, and ease of movements, aqua-based aerobic activities are commonly perceived as a simpler form of exercise, therefore, lacking the fitness-related benefits equivalent to that of land-based aerobic activities. The purpose of this study was to compare fitness-related benefits between land-based (LAND) versus aqua-based (AQUA) aerobic activity classes within a 15-week period.
METHODS: One hundred and fifty-four volunteers participating in LAND (N.=76) and AQUA (N.=78) exercise groups were required to exercise 2 days per week, 50 minutes per day, for 15 weeks. Pre- and post-fitness assessments obtained were body composition, muscular endurance, muscular strength, cardiorespiratory endurance, and flexibility.
RESULTS: Mixed ANOVA showed a main effect and interaction for body composition in which, overall, participants decreased more body fat percentage in the land group. A main effect for both muscular strength and muscular endurance was revealed, but no interactions. There were no significant main effects or interactions for neither cardiorespiratory endurance nor flexibility.
CONCLUSIONS: Individuals participating in land-based aerobic activities displayed greater decreases in percent body fat when compared to aqua-based aerobic activities, whereas both land- and aqua-based displayed improvements in muscular strength and muscular endurance. There were no changes in cardiorespiratory endurance and flexibility within both groups.


KEY WORDS: Water sports; Exercise test; Athletic performance

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