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Table 5 HIIT studies in metabolic disease

From: High-Intensity Interval Training in Older Adults: a Scoping Review

Article HIIT/SIT protocol Outcomes Feasibility/tolerability
Andonian et al. (2018) [68] Frequency: 3×/week for 10 weeks
Intervals: 10 intervals at 80–90% HRR for 1–1.5 min
Rest: Recovery at 50–60% HRR for 1–1.5 min
Modality: Treadmill (graded)
Muscle remodeling markers (plasma galectin-3, skeletal muscle cytokines, muscle myostatin concentrations) were unchanged from baseline after training in both populations. Both groups had an increase in VO2peak and Disease Activity Score-28 after training. Not given
Bartlett et al. (2020) [69] Frequency: 3×/week for 10 weeks
Intervals: 60–90 s at 80–90% VO2 reserve
Rest: 60–90 s at 50–60% VO2 reserve
Time: 30 min
Modality: Treadmill walking
In both groups after training there was significant decrease in fasting glucose and insulin and improved glucose control and insulin sensitivity (all p < 0.05). Before training, VO2peak in the older group was significantly less than that of the younger group (p < 0.001) but increased by 16 ± 11% following training (p = 0.002), decreasing the difference by 6%. Not given
Boukabous et al. (2019) [70] Frequency: 3×/week for 8 weeks
Intervals: 6 intervals at 90% HRR for 1 min
Rest: 2-4 min recovery at 40% HRR
Modality: Treadmill
Neither exercise group resulted in a change in body composition. Total cholesterol, non-HDL cholesterol, and Framingham risk decreased similarly in both groups. Physical capacity (6-min walk test) significantly increased in both groups while maximal strength and VO2peak were unchanged. Dropouts: None
Compliance: No difference in completion rate between groups (HIIT: 92.7%, MCT 94.7%).Acceptance of protocol: Affective response before and after each session was high and similar between HIIT and MCT and was stable throughout intervention.
Hwang et al. (2019) [71] Frequency: 4×/week for 8 weeks
Intervals: 4 intervals at 90% HRpeak for 4 min
Rest: 3 min at 70% HRpeak
Modality: All-extremity non-weight-bearing ergometer
Primary—feasibility and tolerability; Secondary—aerobic fitness increased significantly and similarly in both groups (VO2peak increased by 10% in HIIT and 8% in MCT; Maximal exercise test duration increased by 1.8 min in HIIT and 1.3 min in MCT; VT increased by 11% in HIIT and 14% in MCT). Percent body fat decreased by 1% in MCT, increased by 0.9% in control, and was unchanged in HIIT. Glycemic control and lipids were unchanged by interventions Dropouts: 8 withdrew and were not included in results. 22% participants in HIIT and 16% in MCT (HIIT: schedule conflicts, prior medical issues, plantar fasciitis; MCT: ergometer seat and hurricane).
Compliance: Similar attendance in both groups and one in each group missed a session due to exercise-related fatigue.
AEs: HIIT: 1 participant experienced dyspnea, one participant on insulin had dizziness and hypotension once following HIIT, neither experienced hypoglycemia. Both recovered with rest and rehydration. During initial sessions, some found ergometer seat to be uncomfortable and one withdrew. No serious AEs were noted requiring hospitalization or medical treatment.
Acceptance of protocol: Most participants reported the interventions to be enjoyable except for a few in MCT who complained of boredom.
Karstoft et al. (2017) [72] Frequency: 10 sessions in 2 weeks
Intervals: 10 intervals at 89% VO2peak for 3 min
Rest: 54% VO2peak for 3 min
Modality: Treadmill
Neither intervention had an impact on the resting metabolic rate and mean oxygen consumption and heart rates were similar between the treatment groups. Neither intervention resulted in changes in physical fitness or body composition. Measures of glycemic control, however, were seen to be improved in the HIIT group but not MCT or control. Compliance: 99% adherence in both MCT and HIIT.
Maillard et al. (2016) [73] Frequency: 2×/week for 16 weeks
Intervals: Maximum 60× 8-s intervals at 80% HRmax
Rest: 12-s active recovery
Time: 20 min
Modality: Cycle ergometer
Both HIIT and MCT resulted in similar decrease in whole-body fat mass (HIIT: − 2.5% ± 1.3%; MCT: − 3.2% ± 1.2%). HIIT resulted in a significantly larger decrease in total abdominal and visceral fat mass. HbA1c and triglyceride-to-HDL ratio decreased after interventions in both groups. After 16 weeks, levels of physical activity scores, total energy intake, and macronutrient consumption did not change in either group. Dropouts: 1 from MCT group for personal reasons.
Mohammadi et al. (2017) [74] Frequency: 3×/week for 8 weeks
Intervals: 4–8 intervals at 90% HRR for 4 min
Rest: Active recovery for 2 min
Modality: Not given
Serum level of adipokines (chemerin and visfatin) decreased significantly after 8 weeks HIIT. Weight, BMI, and percentage of body fat all decreased significantly after HIIT intervention. Not given
Pandey et al. (2017) [75] Frequency: 3×/day, 5days/week for 12 weeks
Intervals: 85% HRmax for 10 min
Rest: At least 2h between sessions
Modality: Variable, both supervised (2×/week) and at home (3×/week)
Cardiometabolic measures were significantly improved in HCT compared to MCT: Specifically, a significant decrease in BMI, reduction in HbA1c and greater decrease in LDL (HIIT: − 11% vs. MCT: − 4%) and greater increase in HDL (HIIT: 22% vs. MCT: 3%). Compliance: Adherence poor in both groups but better in the HIIT group. Exercise goal was 600 min of exercise/month in both groups. Compliance ranged from about 200 min to nearly 600 min/month. (60.3% for MCT, and 76.7% for HIIT)
  1. HIIT: high-intensity interval training; MCT: moderate-intensity continuous training; VO2: volume of oxygen consumption; HDL: high-density lipoprotein; LDL: low-density lipoprotein; BMI: body mass index; HbA1c: glycosylated hemoglobin; HRR: heart rate reserve; HR: heart rate; VT: ventilatory threshold; AE = adverse events