The effects of vigorous exercise training on physical function in children with arthritis: A randomized, controlled, SINGLE-BLINDED trial

Davinder Singh-Grewal, Jane Schneiderman-Walker, Virginia Wright, Oded Bar-Or, Joseph Beyene, Hiran Selvadurai, Bonnie Cameron, Ronald M. Laxer, Rayfel Schneider, Earl D. Silverman, Lynn Spiegel, Shirley Tse, Claire Leblanc, Janice Wong, Samantha Stephens, Brian M. Feldman

The objective of this study was to examine the effectiveness of high-intensity aerobic training compared with low-intensity training in terms of energy cost of locomotion, peak oxygen uptake, peak power, and self-reported physical function in children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Eighty children with JIA, ages 8-16 years participated in a 12-week, 3-times-weekly training program consisting of high-intensity aerobics in the experimental group and qigong in the control group. Subjects underwent exercise testing measuring submaximal oxygen uptake at 3 km/hour as the primary outcome, maximal oxygen uptake, and peak power at the beginning and end of the program. The authors conclude that activity programs with or without an aerobic training component are safe and may result in an important improvement in physical function. The intensity of aerobic training did not seem to provide any additional benefits, but higher adherence in the qigong program may suggest that less intensive regimens are easier for children with JIA to comply with, and provide a degree of benefit equivalent to more intensive programs.

Arthritis Care & Research, 2007, 57(7), 1202-1210

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