Author(s): Dalgas U, Stenager E, IngemannHansen T
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Abstract This review summarizes the existing knowledge regarding the effects of physical exercise in patients suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS). Furthermore, recommendations are given regarding exercise prescription for MS patients and for future study directions. Previously, MS patients were advised not to participate in physical exercise. During recent years, it has been increasingly acknowledged that exercise benefits MS patients. The requirement for exercise in MS patients is emphasized by their physiological profile, which probably reflects both the effects of the disease per se and the reversible effects of an inactive lifestyle. To date the effects of exercise have only been studied in moderately impaired MS patients with an EDSS score of less than 7. Evidence exists for recommending participation in endurance training at low to moderate intensity, as the existing literature demonstrates that MS patients can both tolerate and benefit from this training modality. Also, resistance training of moderate intensity seems to be well tolerated and to have beneficial effects on MS patients, but the methodological quality of the existing evidence is in general low and the number of studies is limited. Only two studies have evaluated the effects of combined resistance- and endurance training, making solid conclusions regarding this training modality impossible.
This article was published in Mult Scler
and referenced in Journal of Gerontology & Geriatric Research