Objective: To investigate the effects of elastic tubing training compared with conventional resistance training on the improvement of functional exercise capacity, muscle strength, fat-free mass, and systemic inflammation in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Design: A prospective, randomized, eight-week clinical trial.
Setting: The study was conducted in a university-based, outpatient, physical therapy clinic.
Subjects: A total of 49 patients with moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Interventions: Participants were randomly assigned to perform elastic tubing training or conventional resistance training three times per week for eight weeks.
Main measures: The primary outcome measure was functional exercise capacity. The secondary outcome measures were peripheral muscle strength, health-related quality of life assessed by the Chronic Respiratory Disease Questionnaire (CRDQ), fat-free mass, and cytokine profile.
Results: After eight weeks, the mean distance covered during six minutes increased by 73 meters (±69) in the elastic tubing group and by 42 meters (±59) in the conventional group (p < 0.05). The muscle strength and quality of life improved in both groups (P < 0.05), with no significant differences between the groups. There was a trend toward an improved fat-free mass in both groups (P = 0.05). After the first and last sessions, there was an increase in interleukin 1β (IL-1β) and interleukin 10 (IL-10) in both groups, while tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) was stimulated only in the conventional training group.
Conclusion: Elastic tubing training had a greater effect on functional exercise capacity than conventional resistance training. Both interventions were equally effective in improving muscle strength and quality of life.
Keywords: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; muscle strength; rehabilitation; resistance training.
© The Author(s) 2014.