Exercise and hypertension

Curr Opin Cardiol. 2001 Nov;16(6):356-9. doi: 10.1097/00001573-200111000-00007.


Epidemiologic studies have consistently revealed inverse associations between physical activity (or fitness) and hypertension. There are hypotensive benefits to exercise training found across a number of aerobic and progressive resistance training modalities. Optimal exercise prescriptions remain unclear, but hypotensive benefits have been noted for mild to vigorous ranges of exercise intensity, for as few as three exercise sessions per week and durations as short as 20 minutes. Hypertensive subjects appear to experience greater reductions than normotensive subjects. Exercise interventions may be safely and effectively used with mild to moderate as well as severe levels of hypertension. The incorporation of physical activity with other lifestyle interventions provides multiple benefits to hypertensive patients that extend beyond a reduction in blood pressure.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Blood Pressure*
  • Exercise*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / physiopathology*
  • Hypertension / therapy*
  • Life Style