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Low-volume high-intensity interval training reduces
hyperglycemia and increases muscle mitochondrial
capacity in patients with type 2 diabetes
Jonathan P. Little, Jenna B. Gillen, Michael E. Percival, Adeel Safdar, Mark A.
Tarnopolsky, Zubin Punthakee, Mary E. Jung and Martin J. Gibala
J Appl Physiol 111:1554-1560, 2011. First published 25 August 2011;
doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00921.2011You might find this additional info useful...
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J Appl Physiol 111:1554–1560, 2011.
First published August 25, 2011; doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.00921.2011.

Low-volume high-intensity interval training reduces hyperglycemia and
increases muscle mitochondrial capacity in patients with type 2 diabetes
Jonathan P. Little,1 Jenna B. Gillen,1 Michael E. Percival,1 Adeel Safdar,1,2 Mark A. Tarnopolsky,2
Zubin Punthakee,2 Mary E. Jung,3 and Martin J. Gibala1
1Departments of Kinesiology and of 2Pediatrics and Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario; and 3School
of Health and Exercise Sciences, University of British Columbia Okanagan, Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada
Submitted 22 July 2011; accepted in final form 24 August 2011

exercise; continuous glucose monitoring; mitochondria; GLUT4; glycemic control
REGULAR EXERCISE IS AN EFFECTIVE strategyfor the prevention
and treatment of type 2 diabetes (T2D; 6). Most studies
examining the therapeutic effects of exercise in T2D involve
continuous, low- to moderate-intensity exercise such as walking, jogging, or cycling for 30 min/session (reviewed in Ref.
6). Although the optimal strategy has not been established,
higher intensity exercise may be more effective for improving
glycemic controlin patients with T2D (2, 25). Recently revised
guidelines from the American Diabetes Association advocate
at least 150 min of moderate to vigorous exercise per week (6).
High-intensity interval training (HIT), which involves repeated
bursts of vigorous exercise interspersed with periods of rest,
may be an attractive option to implement higher intensity

Address for reprint requests andother correspondence: M. J. Gibala, Dept.
of Kinesiology, Ivor Wynne Centre, Rm 219, McMaster Univ., 1280 Main St.
West, Hamilton, ON L8S 4K1, Canada (e-mail:

exercise training in T2D. The utility of HIT for improving
disease outcomes has been demonstrated in patients with metabolic syndrome, heart failure, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (reviewed in Ref.7). However, the potential
benefits of HIT on disease parameters in T2D have yet to be
We (8, 14, 16) and others (1, 21) have shown that HIT elicits
physiological remodeling comparable to moderate-intensity
continuous training in healthy adults, despite a substantially
lower time commitment and reduced total exercise volume. As
little as six sessions of low-volume HIT over 2...
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