Massey University School of Sport and Exercise has started research into what exercise is best to help Maori men reduce their risk of diabetes and other obesity-related illnesses.
Dr Isaac Warbrick, who is leading the study, says men over the age of 25 who are inactive and overweight but outwardly healthy will undergo a 12 week workout.
He says participants are split into three groups: one doing resistance exercise or weight training, another cardio exercise - swimming, running, cycling - and the third group a mixture of both.
Dr Warbrick says the programme is more than just about improving the men's physical health.
He wants to evaluate how enjoyable Maori men find exercise and what effect it has on their mental well-being and the relationship with their family.
Dr Warbrick says the whanau approach is an important part of the research and three times a week the men will come together as one group to work with a trainer.