Preliminary validation of an exercise program suitable for pregnant women with abnormal glucose metabolism: inhibitory effects of Tai Chi Yuttari-exercise on plasma glucose elevation

J Phys Ther Sci. 2016 Dec;28(12):3411-3415. doi: 10.1589/jpts.28.3411. Epub 2016 Dec 27.


[Purpose] There is insufficient evidence related to exercise programs that are safe and efficacious for pregnant women with abnormal glucose metabolism. Tai Chi Yuttari-exercise is an exercise program with validated safety and efficacy in improving physical function in the elderly. In this study, we investigated this program's inhibitory effects on plasma glucose elevation when it was adapted to a pregnancy model. [Subjects and Methods] Twelve 18- to 19-year-old females without a history of pregnancy were randomly assorted into two groups: an intervention group, for which six subjects were outfitted with mock-pregnancy suits and asked to perform Tai Chi Yuttari-exercise, and a control group who did not perform exercise. The intervention group had a mean Borg Scale score of 11.1 ± 0.9 during the exercise. [Results] No significant intragroup differences were observed in fasting, baseline, or post-intervention/observation plasma glucose levels. On the other hand, the intergroup change in plasma glucose levels after intervention/observation was significant when comparing the intervention and control groups: -1.66 ± 7.0 and 9.42 ± 6.57 mg/dl, respectively. [Conclusion] Tai Chi Yuttari-exercise appears to effectively inhibit plasma glucose elevation at intensity and movement levels that can be safely applied to pregnant women with abnormal glucose metabolism.

Keywords: Gestational diabetes mellitus; Glucose metabolism disorders; Pregnant women with abnormal glucose metabolism.