Daily physical activity and exercise for people with long term neurological conditions: A delicate balance between training and recovery

Olaf Verschuren, Claire Fitzsimons, Gillian Mead, Frederike van Wijck, Rita van den Berg-Emons, Annet Dallmeijer, Astrid Balemans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: In this paper we aim to provide insight, based on a comprehensive review of the literature, that may be helpful when enrolling people with long term neurological conditions (LTNC) into daily physical activity or exercise programs. We will discuss the following issues: 1) balance between training and recovery; 2) intensities of common physical activities like walking; and 3) consequences for daily physical activity and exercise prescription.
Material and Methods A comprehensive review of studies up to July 2017 was performed. Databases searched were PubMed, EMBASE, SPORTDiscus, and PsychINFO.
Results: Five papers, that provided useful data on relative intensity of walking (i.e., the oxygen consumption of the activity relative to the maximal capacity) in people with LTNC, were identified and analysed. For stroke survivors the relative intensity of walking was between 62.3 and 69.8%. For children with cerebral palsy these values ranged from 52 to 78%, and for adults with CP an average relative intensity of 52% was found. These levels of relative intensity are considerably higher compared to those experienced by able-bodied children (36±8.4%) and adults (27±6%).
Conclusion For a group of people with LTNC, walking can be categorized as a moderate physical activity while for others it might be a vigorous physical activity. When developing a physical activity or exercise program, insight into the intensity of physical activities is important.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJacobs Journal of Sports Medicine
Volume4
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2017

Keywords

  • stroke
  • physical activity
  • cerebral palsy
  • walking
  • exercise

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