The objective of this study was to evaluate the aerobic capacity of elderly participants in the family health program at Health Municipal Secretary, who were submitted to a regular program of physical exercise. This experimental study had a sample size of 98 hypertensive elderly women. The sample was divided randomly into an experimental group (EG; n=58, age: 67±6 years) and a control group (CG; n=40; age: 70±6 years). Aerobic capacity was evaluated by a six-minute walking test (WT6). The intervention program was conducted three times a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday), between 17:00 and 17:45 hours, with an intensity that varied from 55% to 75% of the theoretical maximum heart rate. Student's paired t-tests or Wilcoxon tests were utilised in the intra-group analysis (for homogenous or heterogeneous distributions of the data, respectively). An ANOVA two-way parametric test was used to evaluate the inter-group data followed by the Scheffe post hoc test. A value of p<0.05 was adopted for statistical significance. The results revealed an increase in distance travelled in the EG in the post-test relative to the pretest (Δ= 70.58 m; p<0.0001) and relative to the CG post-test (Δ= 116.58 m; p<0.0001). Furthermore, the CG travelled less distance in the post-test than in the pre-test (Δ= -0.78 m; p=0.003). Therefore, we infer that a walking regimen of controlled intensity improves the distance travelled by elderly women in the WT6 by increasing their aerobic capacity.
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