Comparison of the Effect of Eight Weeks of Water-Based Versus Land-Based Cycling on Serum Levels of Testosterone and IGF-1 in Elderly Men

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Background: aging is accompanied by multiplie changes in the body, mainly due to hormonal changes. Few favorable comprehensive exercise prescriptions are defined for older adults. Objectives: The current study aimed to compare the effect of eight weeks of water-based versus land-based cycling on serum levels of testosterone and IGF-1 in male elderly. Methods: Twenty participants were randomly allocated into two groups of water-based cycling (n = 10; mean age = 64.1 ± 5.4 years; and body mass index (BMI) = 25.2 ± 2.4 kg/m2) and land-based cycling (n = 10; mean age=63.8 ± 4.3 years; and BMI = 25.0 ± 3.7 kg/m2). Both groups received eight weeks of cycling program at 60% to 70% of maximum heart rate, three sessions per week. In the first week, training sessions were nearly 30 minutes, then increased by 2 minutes per week. At the baseline and the end of the program, the fasting blood of participants was measured to evaluate testosterone and IGF-1 concentrations. Results: After providing the intervention, the serum testosterone level was significantly increased in the WBC groups (18.75%, P = 0.010), nevertheless, it was significantly decreased in the LBC group (20.69%, P = 0.042). Also, serum IGF-1 level was significantly increased in the WBC group (9.69%, P = 0.005), though, it didn’t change in the LBC group after providing the intervention (-5.9%, P = 0.555). The independent sample t-test indicated an increased level of testosterone in the WBC (P < 0.05) compared to the LBC group. However, there was no difference in IGF-1 level between the two groups. Conclusions: Water-based cycling program caused alters in testosterone and IGF-1. This proposes that WBC protocol may stimulate anabolic effects in older adults.