Comparison of an aquatic exercise program and a land-based exercise program for persons with mulitiple sclerosis
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AbstractExercise may assist in the management of symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS), and help to attenuate losses in functional ability. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine whether aquatic and land-based exercise programs could improve physiological and psychological variables in persons with MS, and whether aquatic or land-based exercise provided a greater benefit. Six women with MS were randomly assigned to 16 weeks of land-based exercise, aquatic exercise, or a control group. Participants were evaluated pre- and post-training for changes in aerobic power, handgrip strength, lower extremity muscular strength and endurance, 200-metre walk, and the Fatigue Impact Scale (FIS). Aerobic power improvement ranged from 0% to 10.2%, and notably both exercise groups improved their 200-metre walk time (6.8% -19.5%). The aquatic exercise group showed specific improvements in left leg muscular endurance (10.0% - 66.7%). Total fatigue and physical fatigue were reduced (25.2% -41.4%; 21.1 % - 33.3%, respectively) in most of the participants. It is recommended that the effects of land-based and aquatic exercise programs be investigated further with an increased number of participants with MS.
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