Resistance training effectiveness in patients with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease: recommendations for exercise prescription

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2004 Aug;85(8):1217-23. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2003.12.025.


Objectives: To determine the effects of a 12-week, home-based resistance exercise program on strength, body composition, and activities of daily living (ADLs) in men and women with Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease and to design an ADL-based resistance exercise prescription template.

Design: Double-blind, placebo-controlled study.

Setting: Testing in a university setting; exercise in patients' homes.

Participants: Twenty CMT patients who volunteered.

Intervention: Subjects progressively strength trained at home 3 d/wk for 12 weeks.

Main outcome measures: Timed ADLs, isometric strength, and body composition.

Results: Absolute strength was greater in men with CMT in only 4 of 10 baseline measures (P<.05), but not when strength was normalized by lean mass. Training compliance was 87% with no gender differences. At baseline, women had 80% of normal strength in 4 of 10 measures, whereas men did not achieve 80% of normal strength in any measure. After training, women had 80% of normal strength in 8 of 10 measures, whereas men only had 80% of normal strength in 1. Training volumes and strength change scores showed no gender differences. ADLs improved after training with no gender differences (P<.05). An exercise prescription template was developed by using chair-rise time to estimate starting weights for lower body and supine rise for upper body.

Conclusions: Resistance training improved strength and ADLs equally in men and women. We designed an exercise prescription recommendation, based on ADL performance.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Body Composition
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / complications
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / physiopathology
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / rehabilitation*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Exercise Therapy / standards
  • Female
  • Home Care Services* / standards
  • Humans
  • Isometric Contraction
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Weakness / etiology
  • Muscle Weakness / prevention & control
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Prescriptions / standards
  • Sex Characteristics*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Weight Lifting* / standards