The effects of elastic tubing-based resistance training compared with conventional resistance training in patients with moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a randomized clinical trial

Clin Rehabil. 2014 Nov;28(11):1096-106. doi: 10.1177/0269215514527842. Epub 2014 Mar 19.


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.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Ambulatory Care
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Exercise Tolerance / physiology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Strength / physiology
  • Patient Compliance / statistics & numerical data
  • Prospective Studies
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / diagnosis
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / rehabilitation*
  • Quality of Life*
  • Resistance Training / instrumentation*
  • Resistance Training / methods*
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Treatment Outcome