Study Shows Regular Exercise Can Reduce Risk of Hospitalization from COVID-19

Have you ever heard the phrase “the best defense is a good offense?” While it may seem to just apply to sports, it turns out that this concept applies to humans as well!

Most people know that exercise can prevent injuries to your muscles, joints, and bones, but recent research has proven that exercising regularly can also reduce your risk of hospitalization in the case of COVID-19 infection.

In a study performed in Detroit, Michigan, researchers compared baseline fitness (as measured by METs, or peak metabolic equivalents) that they had for patients who tested positive for SARS-CoV 2, and found that those who had a higher value of peak METs prior to infection had a 13-17% lower chance of being hospitalized compared to those who had a lower peak METs value. In layman’s terms, this study proved that those who are in better shape are less likely to be hospitalized because of COVID-19.

This may seem intuitive initially, but the research was especially important considering the average age of the participants was 59 years old and included a mostly minority population, two categories of people who are at a higher risk for hospitalization or complications from COVID-19. This means that even older people who may be considered to be at higher risk are still able to combat their risk of serious illness by staying in shape.

It is hard to get into a routine, especially considering how many of us have been a little less active than usual through the months of the pandemic. We at Red Canyon are passionate about helping patients live their best lives while improving their health, and would love to help you any step of the way! Whether it’s pesky hip pain or just not quite knowing where to start, your therapist is happy to perform an assessment and come up with a treatment plan to improve your mobility, increase your strength, and now as we know, reduce your risk for serious illness from COVID-19!

Citation: Lavie CJ, Sanchis-Gomar F, Arena R, Fit is It in COVID-19, FuturePandemics, and Overall Healthy Living, Mayo Clinic Proceedings (2020), doi: