ANCHOR LEAD: PEOPLE WITH BLOOD VESSEL DISEASE IN THEIR LEGS ARE HELPED BY WALKING, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Walking improves walking in people with blood vessel disease, known as peripheral arterial disease or PAD, a recent JAMA article found. Elizabeth Ratchford, a PAD expert at Johns Hopkins, says the study underscores the need to establish specific goals when it comes to relieving symptoms.
RATCHFORD: So it seems like the treadmill training worked better if your goal is to try to walk farther. That’s traditionally what we tell people too, that even bicycling if you want to be able to bike farther and you have claudication then you need to bike, but if you want to walk farther than you need to walk. So whatever it is that you’re working on you’ve got to do that to improve your skills. And then the resistance training is important for other reasons. I wouldn’t want to dismiss it altogether particularly for osteoporosis I wouldn’t want people to come away from this saying oh, I should only walk. :28
Adding strength or resistance training to walking also improves balance and may help older people avoid falls and consequent fractures. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting