The acute effect of low-intensity walking on blood pressure (BP) is unclear.
To determine if the acute use of a walking workstation reduces ambulatory blood pressure (ABP) in prehypertensive men and women.
Ten prehypertensive adults participated in a randomized, cross-over study that included a control workday and a walking workstation workday. ABP was measured for 7 hour during the workday and for 6 hour after work.
Both systolic BP (SBP) (134 ± 14 vs. 137 ± 16 mmHg; P = .027) and diastolic BP (DBP) (79 ± 10 vs. 82 ± 12 mmHg; P = .001) were lower on the walking workstation day. Postwork hours (4:00 PM–10:00 PM), SBP (129 ± 13 vs. 133 ± 14 mmHg; P = .008), and DBP (74 ± 11 vs. 78 ± 13 mmHg; P = .001) were also lower on the walking workstation day. DBP load was significantly lower during the walking workstation day, with only 14% of the readings above 90 mmHg compared with 22% of the control day readings (P = .037).
Accumulation of very-light-intensity physical activity (~2 METs) over the course of a single work day using a walking workstation may reduce BP burden in prehypertensive individuals.
Zeigler, Swan (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Gaesser are with the Healthy Lifestyles Research Center, School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, Arizona State University, Phoenix, AZ. Bhammar is with the Institute of Exercise and Environmental Medicine, Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX.