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Neurology. 2017 Aug 15;89(7):736-745. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000004224. Epub 2017 Jul 21.

Effects of exercise on fitness and health of adults with spinal cord injury: A systematic review.

Author information

1
From the School for Sports, Exercise and Health Sciences (J.W.v.d.S., V.L.G.-T.), Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport, National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine, Loughborough University, UK; School of Health and Exercise Sciences (K.A.M.G.), University of British Columbia, Kelowna; ICORD (K.A.M.G., C.R.W.) and School of Kinesiology (C.R.W.), University of British Columbia, Vancouver; Department of Kinesiology (D.S.D.), Brock University, St. Catharines; Department of Kinesiology (A.L.H.), McMaster University, Hamilton; and Parkwood Institute (D.L.W.), Lawson Health Research Institute, London, Canada.
2
From the School for Sports, Exercise and Health Sciences (J.W.v.d.S., V.L.G.-T.), Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport, National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine, Loughborough University, UK; School of Health and Exercise Sciences (K.A.M.G.), University of British Columbia, Kelowna; ICORD (K.A.M.G., C.R.W.) and School of Kinesiology (C.R.W.), University of British Columbia, Vancouver; Department of Kinesiology (D.S.D.), Brock University, St. Catharines; Department of Kinesiology (A.L.H.), McMaster University, Hamilton; and Parkwood Institute (D.L.W.), Lawson Health Research Institute, London, Canada. kathleen_martin.ginis@ubc.ca.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To synthesize and appraise research testing the effects of exercise interventions on fitness, cardiometabolic health, and bone health among adults with spinal cord injury (SCI).

METHODS:

Electronic databases were searched (1980-2016). Included studies employed exercise interventions for a period ≥2 weeks, involved adults with acute or chronic SCI, and measured fitness (cardiorespiratory fitness, power output, or muscle strength), cardiometabolic health (body composition or cardiovascular risk factors), or bone health outcomes. Evidence was synthesized and appraised using Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE).

RESULTS:

A total of 211 studies met the inclusion criteria (22 acute, 189 chronic). For chronic SCI, GRADE confidence ratings were moderate to high for evidence showing exercise can improve all of the reviewed outcomes except bone health. For acute SCI, GRADE ratings were very low for all outcomes. For chronic SCI, there was low to moderate confidence in the evidence showing that 2-3 sessions/week of upper body aerobic exercise at a moderate to vigorous intensity for 20-40 minutes, plus upper body strength exercise (3 sets of 10 repetitions at 50%-80% 1-repetition maximum for all large muscle groups), can improve cardiorespiratory fitness, power output, and muscle strength. For chronic SCI, there was low to moderate confidence in the evidence showing that 3-5 sessions per week of upper body aerobic exercise at a moderate to vigorous intensity for 20-44 minutes can improve cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle strength, body composition, and cardiovascular risk.

CONCLUSIONS:

Exercise improves fitness and cardiometabolic health of adults with chronic SCI. The evidence on effective exercise types, frequencies, intensities, and durations should be used to formulate exercise guidelines for adults with SCI.

PMID:
28733344
DOI:
10.1212/WNL.0000000000004224
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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