The Effects of Exercise on Resting Blood Pressure in Children and Adolescents: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

Authors

  • George A. Kelley DA,

    1. From the Clinical Investigation Program, Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA;1 and the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO2
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  • 1 Kristi S. Kelley Med,

    1. From the Clinical Investigation Program, Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA;1 and the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO2
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  • and 1 Zung Vu Tran Phd 2

    1. From the Clinical Investigation Program, Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, Boston, MA;1 and the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, CO2
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George A. Kelley, DA, Associate Professor, Graduate Program in Clinical Investigation, Director, Meta-Analytic Research Group, MGH Institute of Health Professions, 101 Merrimac Street, Room 1059B, Boston, MA 02114
E-mail: gakelley@bics.bwh.harvard.edu

Abstract

Resting blood pressure in children and adolescents can track into adulthood. The purpose of this study was to use the meta-analytic approach to examine the effects of exercise on resting systolic and diastolic blood pressure in children and adolescents. Twelve randomized, controlled trials representing 16 outcomes in 1266 subjects met the inclusion criteria. Reductions in blood pressure were approximately 1% and 3% for resting systolic and diastolic blood pressures, respectively. However, random-effects modeling using 5000 bootstrap confidence intervals revealed that neither result was statistically significant (systolic, ±SEM=−1±2; 95% bootstrap confidence intervals=−2 to 0 mm Hg; diastolic, ±SEM=−2±1; 95% bootstrap confidence intervals=−3 to 0 mm Hg). The results of this study suggest that short-term exercise does not appear to reduce resting systolic and diastolic blood pressure in children and adolescents. However, a need exists for additional studies, especially in hypertensive children and adolescents.

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