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Effects Of A 5-day Sports/Fitness Camp On Walking Efficiency In Children With Cerebral Palsy: 2089 Board #6 June 1 930 AM - 1130 AM

Blanchard, Adam, R.1; Dimitropoulou, Katherine1; Weiland, Paul2; Boscarino, Kelly2; Newell, Amber1; Kim, Heakyung1

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2018 - Volume 50 - Issue 5S - p 509–510
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000536760.34835.02
E-09 Thematic Poster - Training in Youth Friday, June 1, 2018, 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM Room: CC-Lower level L100H

1Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY.

2Chapter 126 Sports & Fitness, Bristol, CT.

(No relevant relationships reported)

Physical activity (PA) participation and fitness in children with cerebral palsy (CP) are decreased compared to typically developing peers. Exercise improves fitness and walking ability but little is known for its impact on walking efficiency.

PURPOSE: The purpose of this pilot/feasibility study was to examine the influence of a five day community sports and fitness camp at an adaptive fitness facility on walking energy consumption (walking efficiency) in children with CP.

METHODS: Six boys with CP (mean±SD; age, 11.3±4.7 yr; height, 136.9±27.5 cm; weight, 44.9±26.8 kg) participated in supervised sports and PA for 3 hr/d on 5 consecutive days. Activity energy expenditure (AEE; J·kg·s-1) and oxygen consumption (VO2; ml·kg·min-1) were assessed by Actiheart monitor during five, 10meter walks on day 1 and 5. The PA Questionnaire for Adolescents assessed baseline PA levels. Paired samples t-tests evaluated differences in AEE and VO2 pre- to post- camp; and independent-samples t-test evaluated between-group differences between high and low baseline PA with changes in AEE and VO2.

RESULTS: Although non-significant (low N), medium effect size was seen in the reduction of AEE during walking on day 5 (2.5±0.5 J·kg·s-1) compared to baseline (2.9±0.5 J·kg·s-1; p=0.28, Cohen’s d=-0.66). Similarly, submaximal VO2 was lower on day 5 (8.4±2.0 ml·kg·min-1) compared to baseline (9.3±3.1 ml·kg·min-1; p=0.28, Cohen’s d=-0.35). A strong effect size was seen in that children with low PA (n=3) reduced their VO2 greater (Δ-1.6±2.3 ml·kg·min-1) than children with high PA (n=3) (Δ0.0±0.9 ml·kg·min-1; p=0.31; Cohen’s d=0.92) on day 5 compared to day 1.

CONCLUSIONS: This study was a feasibility study to test the measures and intervention procedures for the development of an evidence-based camp. Findings show that children with CP may improve walking efficiency after participating in a five day community sports/fitness camp held at an adaptive fitness facility. Our next step is to design an appropriately powered intervention to confirm these results and to determine the best frequency, intensity, time, and type of sports/PA performed in the camp.

© 2018 American College of Sports Medicine