- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Promoting Enabling and Empowering Fitness Environments to Increase Exercise and Improve Health for People with Multiple Sclerosis
- The Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Endurance, Strength, Function and Self-Perception in Adolescents with Spastic Cerebral Palsy: A Report of Three Case Studies
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Pain is a Major Secondary Condition Among People with Spinal Cord Injury
- Amputation and Secondary Conditions: Physical Activity Can Reduce Secondary Conditions in Youths With Limb Differences
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Promotion of Physical Fitness and Prevention of Secondary Conditions for Children with Cerebral Palsy
- A randomized clinical trial of strength training in young people with cerebral palsy
- Resistance Training for Children with CP
- The health of women with cerebral palsy.
- Therapeutic value of exercise training in Parkinson's disease.
- Aquatic Exercise for Children with Cerebral Palsy
- Activity Levels and Body Mass Index of Children
- Community Voice: Program Spotlight: Right Fit - Sport, Fitness & Wellness
- Functional strength training in cerebral palsy: A pilot study of a group circuit training class for children aged 4-8 years.
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Non-Traditional Exercise as a Way of Preventing Secondary Conditions - Part II
- 2008 International Walk to School Day - Solomon Elementary School, Chicago, Illinois
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention
- Physical Training in Children with Osteogenesis Imperfecta.
- Defining Secondary Conditions for People with Disabilities
- Community Voice: Program Spotlight - RIC Caring for Kids
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Osteoporosis Risk and Low Bone Mineral Density for People with Disabilities
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Decrease Secondary Condition Risk by Celebrating National Girls and Women in Sports Day with Exercise
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Universal Design and Accessibility Issues that Impact Health and Function for All
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: The Age of Empowerment: People with Disabilities Decreasing Their Risk of Secondary Condition Development
- 2009 Sports Day at Solomon School
- The effects of exercise on children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
- Determinants of Exercise in Adults with Cerebral Palsy.
- Assessing disability in studies on physical activity
- Role of mechanical power estimates in the O2 cost of walking in children with cerebral palsy.
- Kids with ADHD Need to Be On the Move
- Defying Gravity: Young Children with Cerebral Palsy Have a Chance to Dance
- Secondary Condition Prevention: Building Your Own "Health Empowerment Zone"
- No More Sores: Preventing Pressure Sores for People with SCI
- Exercise Programming for Clients with Cerebral Palsy
- Music and Dance Can Pave the Road to Higher Levels of Physical Activity Among Youth with Disabilities
- Cerebral Palsy
- Children with Disabilities and Obesity
- The Rationale and Benefits of Sport Participation for Youth of All Abilities
- Adapted Physical Activities for the Intellectually Challenged Adolescent: Psychomotor Characteristics and Implications for Programming and Motor Intervention
- 'Finding a good thing': the use of quantitative and qualitative methods to evaluate an exercise class and promote exercise for adults with mobility impairments.
- The Combined Effects of Controlled Breathing Techniques and Ventilatory and Upper Extremity Muscle Exercise on Cardiopulmonary Responses in Patients with Spinal Cord Injury
- Focus on Secondary Condition Prevention: Lower Limb Amputation and Long-Term Prosthesis Use
- Obesity Rates in Youth with Disabilities
- Community Voice: First-Time Mom with Spastic Cerebral Palsy
|Jennifer Rowland, Ph.D.|
There have been several articles published within recent years on the effects of exercise on the health of children with CP, including an article by Schlough et al. (2005) that is a pilot study testing the effects of aerobic exercise on endurance, strength, function and self-perception in adolescents with spastic cerebral palsy. This study looked at three adolescents ages 17, 18, and 20 over two phases lasting 10 and 15 weeks, respectively. During phase one, researchers examined the effects of exercising three times per week using the elliptical machine, treadmill, or recumbent stepper, which were used in random order throughout the sessions. Exercise sessions began with two to five minutes of aerobic exercise and progressed as tolerated, with the goal being that participants were to reach and maintain their target heart rate for 20 minutes. During the second phase participants were able to customize their workout routine to their interests using three types of aerobic exercise equipment: treadmill, elliptical trainer, and recumbent stepper, in addition to one participant who elected to swim. Participants showed improvement in gross motor function, strength of the lower extremity muscles, decreased energy required to ambulate, and improved self-perception. The authors suggested that customizing exercise programs to fit individual needs and interests is one way of motivating the initiation of exercise programs that are engaging and could also lend itself to longer-term maintenance of regular exercise for people who might not otherwise find exercise to be rewarding. While this study involved individual case reports for three participants, the positive results provide evidence that customized exercise programs can be beneficial for people with CP. It’s important to note, however, that the evidence for these programs would be strengthened by larger population-based studies involving random assignment.
Although researchers agree more evidence is needed to generalize exercise recommendations across people with different types of cerebral palsy, such as those with spastic diplegia and athetoid CP, there is evidence that exercise programs have been beneficial in improving function, self-perception, cardiovascular health, and strength. Children with CP and other types of disabilities need to have access to sports and community-based programs that allow them to be engaged in interactive and motivational exercise activities. Currently, the barriers to participation in these programs are significant, but more effort must be made on the part of community leaders and those responsible for youth sports to include children with disabilities in all forms of formal activity as a means toward reducing secondary conditions that impair their health and function.
For more information on youth sports programs, visit NCPAD’s searchable programs database at http://www.ncpad.org/programs/ or contact NCHPAD at 800-900-8086.
Other NCHPAD resources include:
Schlough, K., Nawoczenski, D., Case, L.E., Nolan, K., & Wigglesworth, J.K. (2005). The effects of aerobic exercise on endurance, strength, function and self-perception in adolescents with spastic cerebral palsy: A report of three case studies. Pediatric Physical Therapy, 17, 234-250.
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