Objective: To determine the need for a practice walk for the endurance shuttle walk test (ESWT) following the performance of two incremental shuttle walk tests (ISWTs) - one practice and one test - on the same day.
Design: Retrospective data analysis of shuttle walk test measurements. All participants had performed two ISWTs and two ESWTs at a single visit, prior to commencing pulmonary rehabilitation.
Setting: Outpatient physiotherapy department of a university hospital.
Participants: Forty-four patients (33 males, 11 females) with a primary diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, referred for routine pulmonary rehabilitation.
Measurements: Shuttle walk test distance and time, Borg breathlessness score, heart rate and pulsed oxygen saturation.
Results: The mean age of the group was 67.6 years [standard deviation (SD) 9.0] and mean forced expiratory volume in 1 second was 37% predicted (SD 13). The mean times walked during ESWTs 1 and 2 were 195 and 207 seconds (SD 115 and 138), respectively. Using the analysis recommended by Bland and Altman, the mean of the individual differences (d) between Tests 1 and 2 was 12 seconds, with limits of agreement from -88 to +112 seconds.
Conclusion: A practice endurance shuttle walk is unnecessary following performance of ISWTs on the same day.