Benefits of different intensity of aerobic exercise in modulating body composition among obese young adults: A pilot randomized controlled trial

Chih Hui Chiu, Ming Chen Ko, Long Shan Wu, Ding Peng Yeh, Nai Wen Kan, Po Fu Lee, Jenn Woei Hsieh, Ching Yu Tseng, Chien Chang Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The aim of present study was to compare the effects of different aerobic exercise intensities and energy expenditures on the body composition of sedentary obese college students in Taiwan. Methods: Forty-eight obese participants [body mass index (BMI) ≥ 27 kg/m2, age 18-26 years] were randomized into four equal groups (n = 12): light-intensity training group (LITG), 40%-50% heart rate reserve (HRR); middle-intensity training group (MITG), 50%-70% HRR; high-intensity training group (HITG), 70%-80% HRR; and control group (CG). The aerobic exercise training program was conducted for 60 min per day on a treadmill 3 days per week for 12 weeks. All participant anthropometric data, blood biochemical parameters, and health-related physical fitness components were measured at baseline and after 12 weeks. Results: At baseline, the anthropometric indices did not differ significantly among the four groups (p > 0.05). After 12-week exercise intervention, the HITG and MITG had significantly more changes in body weight, waist circumference (WC), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), and waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) than the LITG. The changes in BMI and body fat percentage differed among all four groups (p < 0.05). Conclusions: A 12-week high-intensity exercise intervention with high energy expenditure can considerably reduce body weight, body fat, WC, WHR, and WHtR, whereas a light-intensity exercise intervention can significantly reduce body weight and body fat. Trial registration: Current Controlled Trials TPECTR09831410900 , registered on 24th Dec 2009.

Original languageEnglish
Article number168
JournalHealth and Quality of Life Outcomes
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 24 2017



  • Aerobic exercise
  • Body composition
  • Exercise intensity
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this