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Study to determine how HIIT can help drive down obesity

A new Loughborough University study is investigating how High Intensity Interval Training can best be used to help people who are overweight or diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. 

Academics in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences (SSEHS) have developed a short training programme combining aerobic exercise with resistance training which they believe could aid weight loss and improve the health of some of the country’s most inactive groups.

In the latest phase of the project, they are undertaking a series of tests to assess the body’s biological responses to this exercise. Specifically, they are looking at how satellite cells, which initiate muscle growth, in the muscle respond to high intensity interval exercise.

PhD student Jamie Pugh said:

“We’re looking at the body’s responses to exercise at the cellular level. We want to find out how people can achieve the maximum benefit from a time-efficient exercise programme.

“If our programme works it could be adapted as a strategy to help address the country’s growing obesity problem and reduce the prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes.”

The study is part-funded by Technogym - The Wellness Company, and is the first stage of an international study with the Metabolic Fitness Association and La Sapienza University in Rome.

Researchers are looking to recruit non-smoking males aged 30-60 with a BMI of 27 and over to the study. Participants will be required to visit the laboratory on seven separate occasions – four of which will involve exercise testing. As part of the study, volunteers will receive a comprehensive health and fitness evaluation and free supervised exercise training.

Anyone interested in taking part should contact Jamie Pugh on 07891 877 236 or

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: PR 14/36

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year title in 2008-09 and has been named Sports University of the Year 2013-14 by The Times and Sunday Times. Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and has been voted England's Best Student Experience for six years running in the Times Higher Education league. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

In 2015 the University will open an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University in London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, will offer postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.


Amanda Overend
Public Relations Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 223491

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