Author(s): Gehlsen GM, Grigsby SA, Winant DM
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Abstract This study quantified the effects of an aquatic exercise program on muscular strength, endurance, work, and power of patients with multiple sclerosis. Ten individuals with a mean age of 40 years participated in a 10-week aquatic exercise program. Two types of isokinetic dynamometers were used to assess the muscular variables studied. A Cybex II dynamometer was used to measure peak torque, work, and fatigue in the knee flexor and extensor muscles and a biokinetic swim bench was used to measure muscular force, work, fatigue, and power in the upper extremities. Five velocity settings were selected for each of three testing trials (pretrial, midtrial, and posttrial). For the lower extremities, analysis of variance indicated a significant improvement of peak torque for knee extensor muscles from the pretrial to midtrial (p less than .05). Peak torque values from pretrial to midtrial for knee flexors and from midtrial to posttrial for both the knee extensor and flexor muscles indicated a nonsignificant difference at each velocity studied. Fatigue and work values in the lower extremities improved significantly between the pretrial and posttrial (p less than .05). For the upper extremities, an analysis of variance indicated a significant increase in all force measurements from pretrial to posttrial (p less than .05). Power and total work values also improved significantly (p less than .05). No significant difference in fatigue measurements for the upper extremities was found. The results of this investigation indicated that an aquatic exercise program may induce positive changes in muscular strength, fatigue, work, and power in patients with multiple sclerosis.
This article was published in Phys Ther
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research