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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1995 Jun;27(6):913-9.

Effect of an abdominal binder during wheelchair exercise.

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Department of Human Kinetics, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA.


The purpose of this study was to determine whether use of an abdominal binder would affect oxygen uptake, trunk range of motion, and duration of the stroke phase during wheelchair propulsion. The subjects were six paraplegic wheelchair athletes with T1-T6 injuries and no abdominal muscle function. Each subject performed two trials, one while wearing the binder and one without the binder. Each trial consisted of submaximal and maximal exercise tests conducted on wheelchair rollers. Oxygen uptake was determined by open circuit spirometry while heart rate was determined by telemetry. Max VO2 values averaged 2.51 l.min-1 while average maximum heart rate values were 190 b.min-1. A 3-D video-based motion analysis system was used to obtain kinematic parameters of wheelchair propulsion. In general, 30% of the cycle time was comprised of the stroke phase, while 70% was comprised of the recovery phase across speeds. There were no statistically significant effects of the abdominal binder on any of the cardiovascular or kinematic variables at submaximal or maximal levels of exercise. Under the conditions of this laboratory investigation, it appears that an abdominal binder does not alter physiological or selected biomechanical measures in highly trained athletes.

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