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, 39 (1), 25-31

The Effect of Treadmill Exercise on Gait Efficiency During Overground Walking in Adults With Cerebral Palsy

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The Effect of Treadmill Exercise on Gait Efficiency During Overground Walking in Adults With Cerebral Palsy

On-Yoo Kim et al. Ann Rehabil Med.

Abstract

Objective: To investigate the effect of treadmill walking exercise as a treatment method to improve gait efficiency in adults with cerebral palsy (CP) and to determine gait efficiency during overground walking after the treadmill walking exercise.

Methods: Fourteen adults with CP were recruited in the experimental group of treadmill walking exercise. A control group of 7 adults with CP who attended conventional physical therapy were also recruited. The treadmill walking exercise protocol consisted of 3-5 training sessions per week for 1-2 months (total 20 sessions). Gait distance, velocity, VO2, VCO2, O2 rate (mL/kg·min), and O2 cost (mL/kg·m) were assessed at the beginning and at the end of the treadmill walking exercise. The parameters were measured by KB1-C oximeter.

Results: After the treadmill walking exercise, gait distance during overground walking up to 6 minutes significantly increased from 151.29±91.79 to 193.93±79.01 m, and gait velocity increased from 28.09±14.29 to 33.49±12.69 m/min (p<0.05). Energy efficiency evaluated by O2 cost during overground walking significantly improved from 0.56±0.36 to 0.41±0.18 mL/kg·m (p<0.05), whereas O2 rate did not improve significantly after the treadmill walking exercise. On the other hand, gait velocity and O2 cost during overground walking were not significantly changed in the control group.

Conclusion: Treadmill walking exercise improved the gait efficiency by decreased energy expenditure during overground walking in adults with CP. Therefore, treadmill walking exercise can be an important method for gait training in adults with CP who have higher energy expenditure.

Keywords: Cerebral palsy; Efficiency; Exercise; Gait; Walking.

Conflict of interest statement

No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

Figures

Fig. 1
Fig. 1. Comparison of ΔO2 rate between experimental and control groups. (A) Difference in post-treatment to pretreatment states (Δ) in the O2 rate (mL/kg·min) after treadmill training had no significant differences in the parameter during treadmill walking between experimental and control groups. (B) The experimental group did not show a significant improvement in the ΔO2 rate during overground walking.
Fig. 2
Fig. 2. Comparison of ΔO2 cost between experimental and control groups. (A) Difference from post-treatment to pretreatment states (Δ) in the O2 cost (mL/kg·m) after treadmill training had no significant differences in the parameter during treadmill walking between experimental and control groups. (B) However, the experimental group showed significantly lower ΔO2 cost, as compared with the control group during overground walking (*p<0.05).

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