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Hormonal responses to a single session of wholebody vibration exercise in older individuals
  1. M Cardinale1,2,
  2. R L Soiza3,4,
  3. J B Leiper4,
  4. A Gibson4,
  5. W R Primrose4
  1. 1Olympic Medical Institute, Northwick Park Hospital, Harrow, UK
  2. 2University of Aberdeen, School of Medical Sciences, Aberdeen, UK
  3. 3University of Aberdeen, School of Medicine, Aberdeen, UK
  4. 4Department of Medicine for the Elderly, Woodend Hospital, Aberdeen, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Marco Cardinale, Olympic Medical Institute, Northwick Park Hospital, Watford Road, Harrow HA1 3UJ, UK; marco.cardinale{at}


Objective Whole-body vibration (WBV) has been recently suggested as an alternative form of exercise. In this study, the acute effects of a single session of WBV exercise on anabolic hormones in aged individuals were analysed.

Design A randomised cross-over trial design was used.

Settings Geriatrics Department, Woodend Hospital.

Participants 20 individuals (9 men and 11 women; median age 70 years (range 66 to 85 years) volunteered in the experiment.

Interventions Isometric squat on a platform with vibration or no vibration (control) conditions.

Main outcome measurements Plasma cortisol, testosterone, growth hormone (GH) and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) were measured before, immediately after, and 1 and 2 h after the interventions.

Reports A significant difference between treatments (p<0.001) and a time6treatment interaction (p<0.05) was found in IGF-1 levels. Cortisol levels were shown not to be significantly different between treatments (p = 0.43), but a difference over time (p<0.001) and a time6 treatment interaction (p<0.05) were identified. No significant differences were identified in GH and testosterone levels.

Conclusions As shown by the results of the study, 5 min of WBV exercise characterised by static squat with a frequency of 30 Hz can be performed by older individuals without apparent signs of stress and/or fatigue. Furthermore, WBV produced an acute increase in the circulating levels IGF-1 and cortisol greater than that observed following the same exercise protocol conducted without vibration.

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  • Competing interests None.