January 3, 2017, 1:00pm – 1:00pm EST

Unique strategies for improving the effectiveness of exercise training in patients with kidney failure

There is a common misconception among patients with kidney failure that exercise is not possible for them. But in reality, exercise for patients on dialysis can have huge benefits, including increased energy and feeling better both physically and emotionally. Our speaker, Dr. Ken Wilund, is a successful researcher with more than 70 peer-reviewed journal articles and an expert in the exercise science field.

Dr. Wilund will cover:

  • Previous research regarding exercise in hemodialysis patients, including what has worked, and what has not
  • Strategies for improving outcomes from exercise training interventions, including outcomes related to patient health and quality of life (How much and what type of exercise is recommended)
  • Strategies for improving patient compliance with exercise and physical activity programs

This section is made possible with the support of



Dr. Ken Wilund

Ken Wilund, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Community Health and Division of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Wilund received his B.S. in Nutritional Sciences and PhD. in Kinesiology from the University of Maryland, and completed a post-doctoral research fellowship in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

The primary focus of the research in Dr. Wilund’s lab is to examine the individual and combined effects exercise training and nutritional factors on the health and quality of life of patients with kidney failure undergoing maintenance dialysis therapy. Much of his work focuses on the intradialytic period, as past research indicates that the hemodialysis procedure is associated with acute episodes of inflammation and oxidative stress that contribute to cardiovascular complications, muscle wasting, and other co-morbidities. One of his largest studies to date is an NIH-funded clinical trial examining the efficacy of intradialytic whey protein supplementation and exercise training (cycling) on cardiovascular disease risk and physical function (R01DK084016; clinicaltrials.gov#NCT01234441). He is currently conducting a pilot study aimed at optimizing cardiovascular health and physical function in hemodialysis patients using a novel protocol for reducing chronic volume overload in combination with a comprehensive exercise training program. These projects each support the overall research goal in his lab of examining the efficacy of novel approaches for improving the health and quality of life of patients with kidney failure.


Dr. Wilund has more than 70 peer-reviewed journal articles, and is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Society of Nephrology, the International Society of Nephrology, and the International Society of Renal Nutrition and Metabolism.