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One Minute of Exercise May Be All You Need


Researchers find short bursts of high-intensity exercise are as good as spending up to an hour riding a bike or running.

Researchers find short bursts of high-intensity exercise are as good as spending up to an hour riding a bike or running.


There is good news for people who think they do not have time to exercise.

A group of researchers from a university in Canada recently published a study that says short bursts of high-intensity exercise are good for you.

In fact, this kind of exercise is just as good as spending up to an hour riding a bike or running steadily.

The research team followed 27 men who were not very active for 12 weeks. They divided the men into three groups. One group did short, intense workouts on a bicycle three times a week. Another group rode a bicycle for about 50 minutes, three times a week. A third group did nothing.

The researchers found something they did not expect. The group that exercised for only 10 minutes each session was just as healthy after 12 weeks as the group that exercised for 50 minutes each session.

That is because of the way the researchers organized the workouts.

Each group started with a two-minute warm-up and finished with a three-minute cool-down. But in-between, the high-intensity group sprinted for 20 seconds, followed by a two-minute recovery period. They did three sprints for a total of 10 minutes of exercise. This kind of exercise is known as interval training.

The lead author of the study says interval training is both time efficient and effective.

I’m Dan Friedell.

Dan Friedell adapted this story for Learning English based on a report from VOANews.com. Mario Ritter was the editor.

Can you find 12 minutes in your busy schedule for exercise? We want to know. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

burst – n. a short period of producing or doing something that begins suddenly

session – n. a period of time that is used to do a particular activity

interval – n. a period of time between events

efficient – adj. capable of producing desired results without wasting materials, time, or energy

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