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Kemmler & S. von Stengel (Institute of Medical Physics, Friedrich-Alexander University), 2010-2012

Description of study
It is extensively researched and advised by health providers, that the only way to fight the natural and age-related decline of muscle mass and body/joint function is by regular physical exercise. Sarcopenia is the word used to describe the age associated loss of muscle mass which is replaced by body fat. It is sometimes seen with obesity and especially abdominal fat seems to increase. Abdominal fat in particular, has been proven to be a cardiovascular risk. Sarcopenia occurs in every person after the age of 30 and consists of 1% muscle loss per year, accelerating even more after the age of 50. Kemmler and colleagues studied the effects of 14 weeks of EMS training in 30 post-menopausal women and 28 untrained males 40 years or older.

Result highlights

  • Increase in walking speed greater than any other exercise method
  • Significant decrease in abdominal fat and waist circumference
  • Power and strength increased
  • Increase in muscle mass
  • Increase aerobic capacity

Conclusion
The study results show EMS training can be used by most age groups and can help people improve their body composition as well as their physical capacity. In conclusion of their findings, the scientists stated the following: “… to our best knowledge, we are not aware of conventional exercise studies that reported comparably favourable changes of body fat and free fat mass. The results are remarkable especially considering the short duration…”