HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hula is good for your heart. Literally.
Results of a five-year study with more than 260 Native Hawaiian participants found that hula “significantly” reduced a patient’s risk for heart disease.
On average, those in the study saw their systolic blood pressure go down by 17 points.
The results of the study were released at the American Heart Association national meeting.
As part of the study, participants underwent hypertension education and attended one-hour group hula classes twice a week for three months.
Keaweʻaimoku Kaholokula, principal investigator for the study and chair of the UH medical school’s Department of Native Hawaiian Health, said researchers have found that Native Hawaiians want group-based and culturally relevant lifestyle interventions that resonate with their cultural values.
“Hula is fun, it’s something you can do at an older age as well as a young age,” said Kaholokula, in a news release.
“It can be adjusted, modified for people with different physical capacity. You can do the Merrie Monarch competition duck walks for younger people and you can do the slower, gentle side-to-side (motion) for older folks; so I think it’s a type of physical activity that makes sense, that we can really use for health promotion.”