Advertisement

Rowing: A Favorable Tool to Promote Elderly Health Which Offers Both Aerobic and Resistance Exercise

  • Meiko Asaka
  • Mitsuru HiguchiEmail author
Chapter
  • 2.3k Downloads

Abstract

Aerobic exercise is recommended for the prevention of lifestyle-related diseases, while resistance exercise is recommended for the prevention of osteoporosis and sarcopenia. Both types of exercise are important in helping elderly people to maintain quality of life. Rowing is one of the oldest sports in the world and it offers a combination of both aerobic and resistance exercise. Because rowing is practiced on a seat, less impact is placed upon the knee joints, making it safe for elderly people even if they are categorized as overweight or obese. Elderly rowers have higher cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) and a lower risk of coronary heart diseases compared with age-matched untrained people. The bone mineral density and muscle size in rowers are also greater than in untrained people. After 6-month exercise training in elderly men using a rowing ergometer, CRF and muscle size increased and the risk of lifestyle-related diseases also improved. An indoor rowing ergometer has been developed which offers a safe and easy tool for exercise in elderly people, even those who are wheelchair-bound. Therefore, rowing could offer a beneficial combination of aerobic and resistance exercises for achieving an active life in the elderly population.

Keywords

Rowing Elderly people Physical fitness Lifestyle-related diseases Sarcopenia 

Notes

Acknowledgements

These studies were supported by a grant-in-aid for scientific research (no. 20192289, M. Higuchi) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science; a research grant for health sciences from the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare; a medical health care research grant from the Consolidated Research Institute for Advanced Science and Medical Care at Waseda University; a grant-in-aid for the Global COE (Sport Science for the Promotion of Active Life) from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) of Japan; and a research grant from the Organization for University Research Initiatives at Waseda University entitled “Paradigm shifts in a super-aged society”.

Supplementary material

Video 25.1

(MP4 3393 kb)

Video 25.2

(MP4 1909 kb)

References

  1. Ainsworth BE, Haskell WL, Herrmann SD, Meckes N, Bassett DR Jr, Tudor-Locke C, Greer JL, Vezina J, Whitt-Glover MC, Leon AS (2011) 2011 compendium of physical activities: a second update of codes and MET values. Med Sci Sports Exerc 43:1575–1581PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. American College of Sports Medicine Position Stand (1998) The recommended quantity and quality of exercise for developing and maintaining cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness, and flexibility in healthy adults. Med Sci Sports Exerc 30:975–991CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aoyama T, Asaka M, Ishijima T, Kawano H, Usui C, Sakamoto S, Tabata I, Higuchi M (2009) Metabolic syndrome risk factors in relation to aerobic fitness in Japanese middle-aged and elderly people – Analysis based on “Exercise and Physical Activity Reference for Health Promotion 2006 (EPAR2006)”. Jpn J Phy Fit Sports Med 58:341–352 [in Japanese]CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Asaka M, Usui C, Ohta M, Takai Y, Fukunaga T, Higuchi M (2010) Elderly oarsmen have larger trunk and thigh muscles and greater strength than age-matched untrained men. Eur J Appl Physiol 108:1239–1245PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cook JN, DeVan AE, Schleifer JL, Anton MM, Cortez-Cooper MY, Tanaka H (2006) Arterial compliance of rowers: implications for combined aerobic and strength training on arterial elasticity. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 290:H1596–H1600PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Fiatarone MA, Marks EC, Ryan ND, Meredith CN, Lipsitz LA, Evans WJ (1990) High-intensity strength training in nonagenarians. Effects on skeletal muscle. JAMA 263:3029–3034PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Higuchi M (2011) Health-related Sports Science of Rowing. Ichimura Publishing, Tokyo [in Japanese]Google Scholar
  8. Holloszy JO (1995) 24. Exercise. In: Masoro EJ (ed) Handbook of physiology, section 11, aging. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp. 633–666Google Scholar
  9. Holsgaard-Larsen A, Jensen K (2010) Ergometer rowing with and without slides. Int J Sports Med 31:870–874PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Janssen I, Heymsfield SB, Wang ZM, Ross R (2000) Skeletal muscle mass and distribution in 468 men and women aged 18–88 yr. J Appl Physiol 89:81–88PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Kawano H, Tanaka H, Miyachi M (2006) Resistance training and arterial compliance: keeping the benefits while minimizing the stiffening. J Hypertens 24:1753–1759PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kawano H, Iemitsu M, Gando Y, Ishijima T, Asaka M, Aoyama T, Ando T, Tokizawa K, Miyachi M, Sakamoto S, Higuchi M (2012) Habitual rowing exercise is associated with high physical fitness without affecting arterial stiffness in older men. J Sports Sci 30:241–246PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Laurent S, Boutouyrie P, Asmar R, Gautier I, Laloux B, Guize L, Ducimetiere P, Benetos A (2001) Aortic stiffness is an independent predictor of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in hypertensive patients. Hypertension 37:1236–1241PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Ministry of Health LAW, Japan (2006) Exercise and physical activity reference for health promotion 2006Google Scholar
  15. Ministry of Health LAW, Japan (2013) Exercise and physical activity reference for health promotion 2013Google Scholar
  16. Miyachi M, Kawano H, Sugawara J, Takahashi K, Hayashi K, Yamazaki K, Tabata I, Tanaka H (2004) Unfavorable effects of resistance training on central arterial compliance: a randomized intervention study. Circulation 110:2858–2863PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Sanada K, Miyachi M, Tabata I, Suzuki K, Yamamoto K, Kawano H, Usui C, Higuchi M (2009) Differences in body composition and risk of lifestyle-related diseases between young and older male rowers and sedentary controls. J Sports Sci 27:1027–1034PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Secher NH (1983) The physiology of rowing. J Sports Sci 1:23–53CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Secher NH, Volianitis S (2007) Handbook of sports medicine and science rowing. Publishing, BlackwellGoogle Scholar
  20. Tachibana K, Yashiro K, Miyazaki J, Ikegami Y, Higuchi M (2007) Muscle cross-sectional areas and performance power of limbs and trunk in the rowing motion. Sports Biomech 6:44–58PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Tanaka H, Dinenno FA, Monahan KD, Clevenger CM, DeSouza CA, Seals DR (2000) Aging, habitual exercise, and dynamic arterial compliance. Circulation 102:1270–1275PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Yoshiga CC, Higuchi M, Oka J (2002a) Serum lipoprotein cholesterols in older oarsmen. Eur J Appl Physiol 87:228–232PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Yoshiga CC, Yashiro K, Higuchi M, Oka J (2002b) Rowing prevents muscle wasting in older men. Eur J Appl Physiol 88:1–4PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Advanced Active Aging ResearchWaseda UniversitySaitamaJapan
  2. 2.Faculty of Sports SciencesWaseda UniversitySaitamaJapan

Personalised recommendations