Effect of Ba Duan Jin Qigong on Blood Pressure of Individuals with Essential Hypertension
February 16, 2016 -
Essential hypertension, persistently high arterial
blood pressure with no known organic cause, is challenging but treatable risk
factor for cardiovascular disease. Individuals with untreated hypertension are
at greater risk of heart failure, stroke, and renal failure. Lifestyle
modifications are advocated for the prevention, treatment, and control of
hypertension, with exercise being an integral component. Several studies have
reported that Qigong is effective in lowering blood pressure. As a traditional
Chinese health and fitness qigong exercise routine,
Ba duan jin
dates back to the Song dynasty (960-1279). Practice of Ba duan jin improves
cardiovascular function and helps decrease blood pressure in older adults with
A recent Chinese study, published by Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, investigated whether Ba duan jin may be an
appropriate treatment strategy to reduce blood pressure in individuals with
hypertension and the possible mechanism of the effects.
Forty-eight individuals with essential
hypertension (aged from 57 to 73) were randomized to two groups: 24 to a Ba duan
jin Qigong Group and 24 to a control group. Subjects provided written
informed consent to participate in the study as approved by the ethics review
committee of Beijing Sport University. The Qigong group trained in Ba duan jin five times
per week for 6 months. Sessions included a 5-minute warm-up, 30 minutes of
Qigong exercise, and a 5-minute cool-down. The control group received no intervention.
Weight, waist circumference, systolic BP (SBP), diastolic BP (DBP), high-density
lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C),
total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides, fasting glucose, serum nitric oxide (NO),
and plasma endothelin-1 (ET-1) were measured for each subject at baseline and
after 6 months.
In the present investigation, data analysis indicated that multiple measurements
improved significantly in the Ba duan jin Qigong Group but not in the control
group after a 6-month intervention. It is not surprising that greater
improvement in blood pressure blood lipids, blood glucose, and vascular
endothelium function was found in the Ba duan jin group than in the control group because
the Ba duan jin training was task specific.
A combination of strength and relaxation or dynamism and inertia
helps to improve circulation in the channels and collaterals and smooths the
actions of the joints and the blood circulation. It improves cardiovascular
function and helps cure such illnesses as coronary artery sclerosis.
The results of this study indicate that Ba duan jin Qigong exercise
may have the potential to improve numerous measurements such as fasting glucose and plasma ET-1.
These findings may contribute to the
future planning of community-based exercise programs for individuals with