The effect of green exercise on blood pressure, heart rate and mood state in primary school children.
Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2014 Apr ;11(4):3678-88. Epub 2014 Apr 2. PMID: 24699030
Michael J Duncan
The aim of this study was exploratory and sought to examine the effect on blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR) and mood state responses in primary school children of moderate intensity cycling whilst viewing a green environment compared to exercise alone. Following ethics approval and parental informed consent, 14 children (seven boys, seven girls, Mean age± SD = 10 ± 1 years) undertook two, 15 min bouts of cycling at a moderate exercise intensity in a counterbalanced order. In one bout they cycled whilst viewing a film of cycling in a forest setting. In the other condition participants cycled with no visual stimulus. Pre-, immediately post-exerciseand 15 min post-exercise, BP, HR and Mood state were assessed. Analysis of variance, indicated significant condition X time interaction for SBP (p = 0.04). Bonferroni post-hoc pairwise comparisons indicated that systolic blood pressure (SBP) 15 min post exercise was significantly lower following green exercise compared to the control condition (p = 0.01). There were no significant differences in diastolic blood pressure (DBP) (all p>0.05). HR immediately post exercise was significantly higher than HR pre exercise irrespective of green exercise or control condition (p = 0.001). Mood scores for fatigue were significantly higher and scores for vigor lower 15 min post exercise irrespective of green exercise or control condition (both p = 0.0001). Gender was not significant in any analyses (p>0.05). Thus, the present study identifies an augmented post exercise hypotensive effect for children following green exercise compared to exercise alone.