Men Who Exercise Produce Better Quality Semen, Suggests Study

01/11/2012 16:42 GMT | Updated 01/11/2012 16:47 GMT

A new study has linked moderate physical activity with sperm characteristics that "favour reproduction".

According to researchers from the University of Cordoba in Spain, sperm quality deteriorates in men who have sedentary lifestyles.

The study suggests that men who do moderate physical exercise have better hormone levels and healthier spermatological processes.

"We analysed qualitative semen parameters like the ejaculated volume, sperm count, mobility and sperm morphology," explained the lead author of the study Diana Vaamonde in a statement.

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Semen quality at large has dropped in the last 50 years, due to exposure to external agents, as well as alcohol and tobacco consumption, which has caused an increase in reproductive problems.

"Despite the fact that the sample population is not very big (31 men), given the complexity of the analysis, this is the first study that assessed the differences between these parameters in both populations," states the researcher.

The results conclude that the physically active subjects display better semen values and that moderate exercise is the key.

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In 2010, the same researchers published a study showing that the sperm parameters of elite sportsmen (triathletes and waterpolo players) are worse than men who are just physically active.

It is possible that the increased strain of training causes a decline in sperm quality.

"Despite that fact that more studies are needed to confirm these findings, we can suggest exercise to improve the hormonal environment and stimulate the sperm process," says Vaamonde.

The new research is published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology.