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Australian Indigenous HealthBulletin Alcohol and other drugs knowledge centre Yarning Places

Exercise as Medicine in Indigenous Health



The aim of this research project was to investigate if gym-based exercise could be used as a preventative measure for chronic disease as well as treating the symptoms once a chronic disease has developed.

One hundred and twenty Indigenous Australians in Perth's Nyoongar community took part in the project.

Participants were asked to complete 150 minutes of unsupervised exercise each week, exercises were prescribed by researchers at Edith Cowan University.

Part of the research involved running exercise groups of Aboriginal people in Perth 'emphasising and fostering that community spirit within the gym.'

A key finding of the research indicated the preference to exercise in team sports such as football and netball.

Individual forms of exercise such as going to the gym, swimming or jogging put Indigenous Australians off exercising because it is at odds with their focus on community.

The research project was conducted by PhD candidate Mr Tuguy Esgin and was completed in late 2013.

Abstract adapted from Edith Cowan University


Edith Cowan University
270 Joondalup Drive
Joonalup WA 6027
Ph: 134 328


Last updated: 12 January 2017
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