Quantifying weight-bearing by children with cerebral palsy while in passive standers

Pediatr Phys Ther. Winter 2007;19(4):283-7. doi: 10.1097/PEP.0b013e318156cc4d.


Purpose: Children who are nonambulatory are placed into standers with the goal of providing benefits from weight-bearing. The purpose of this study was to quantify weight-bearing loads by children with cerebral palsy while in standers.

Methods: Electronic load-measuring footplates were fabricated specifically for this study. Weight-bearing loads were continuously measured in 19 children who were nonambulatory during routine 30-minute standing sessions (3-6 sessions/child, total 110 sessions).

Results: Weight-bearing ranged widely (23%-102%) with a mean of 68% of body weight. There was some variation over the course of a session and between different sessions, but more variance was noted between subjects.

Conclusions: Actual weight borne in a stander is quite variable, and in some instances only a fraction of actual body weight. Further studies are required to delineate relevant factors and identify ways to maximize weight-bearing loads while in a stander.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bone Demineralization, Pathologic / prevention & control
  • Cerebral Palsy / physiopathology*
  • Cerebral Palsy / rehabilitation*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Physical Therapy Modalities / instrumentation*
  • Quadriplegia / rehabilitation
  • Weight-Bearing / physiology*