Background: The effects of different exercise training programs on the level of physical activity in daily life in patients with COPD remain to be investigated.
Objective: In patients with COPD we compared the effects of 2 exercise/training regimens (a high-intensity whole-body endurance-and-strength program, and a low-intensity calisthenics-and-breathing-exercises program) on physical activity in daily life, exercise capacity, muscle force, health-related quality of life, and functional status.
Methods: We randomized 40 patients with COPD to perform either endurance-and-strength training (no. = 20, mean ± SD FEV(1) 40 ± 13% of predicted) at 60-75% of maximum capacity, or calisthenics-and-breathing-exercises training (no. = 20, mean ± SD FEV(1) 39 ± 14% of predicted). Both groups underwent 3 sessions per week for 12 weeks. Before and after the training programs the patients underwent activity monitoring with motion sensors, incremental cycle-ergometry, 6-min walk test, and peripheral-muscle-force test, and responded to questionnaires on health-related quality of life and functional status (activities of daily living, pulmonary functional status, and dyspnea).
Results: Time spent active and energy expenditure in daily life were not significantly altered in either group. Exercise capacity and muscle force significantly improved only in the endurance-and-strength group. Health-related quality of life and functional status improved significantly in both groups.
Conclusions: Neither training program significantly improved time spent active or energy expenditure in daily life. The training regimens similarly improved quality of life and functional status. Exercise capacity and muscle force significantly improved only in the high-intensity endurance-and-strength group.