Recreational handball-based training for people with type 2 diabetes: a feasibility trial

Martin Færch Andersen,Allan Riis, Henrik Foged Borup, Astrid Dall, Mie Torp, Rikke Hareskov Elversøe,Janus Laust Thomsen,Peter Vestergaard, Anne-Mette Lücke Dissing


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Introduction Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is recognized as a serious public health concern with a considerable impact on people suffering from the disease and the society. The benefit of physical activity in the prevention and treatment of T2DM are well documented, however, a considerable proportion of individuals with T2DM have an inactive and sedentary lifestyle. Although most people with T2DM are aware of the importance of exercise, many are not interested in joining traditional exercise options, and long-term adherence is poor for those who do. Thus, we aim to investigate the feasibility of recreational handball-based training (HBT) for people diagnosed with T2DM. Methods This single-arm feasibility trial included adults (over 30 years) with a clinical diagnosis of T2DM. They were invited to participate in a 12-week HBT consisting of two weekly 60-minute exercise sessions. The outcome was feasibility, determined by adherence, exercise intensity, adverse events, dropout rate, and metabolic parameters. Results From September to December 2021, 10 people were included in the study. One participant dropped out because of illness and one participant dropped out due to suspected atrial fibrillation. Eight participants concluded the intervention and participated on average 86% (range 14–23) of the HBT sessions exercising with a mean heart rate of 73.4% (standard deviation (SD) 10.2) of individual maximum heart rate. Conclusions HBT for people diagnosed with T2DM was found feasible with a high attendance rate and clinically relevant exercise intensities. However, future randomized controlled trials about the effects of the handball intervention are needed. Trial registration This trial was registered in (NCT05015946) on 23/08/2021.
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