High intensity eccentric resistance training decreases bradykinesia and improves quality of life in persons with Parkinson’s disease: A preliminary study.

Dibble LE, Hale TF, Marcus RL, Gerber JP, Lastayo PC

This studt examined changes in muscle force production, clinical measures of bradykinesia, and quality of life following 12 weeks of a high intensity eccentric resistance exercise program in persons with mild to moderate PD. Twenty individuals with idiopathic PD were matched into an experimental or an active control group. All participants were tested prior to and following a 12-week intervention period. The experimental group performed high intensity quadriceps contractions on an eccentric ergometer 3 days a week for 12 weeks. The active control group participated in an evidence based exercise program of PD. The outcome variables were quadriceps muscle force, clinical bradykinesia measures (gait speed, timed up and go) and disease specific quality of life (Parkinson's disease questionairre-39 [PDQ-39]). Results demonstrated significant time by group interaction effects for gait speed, timed up and go, and the composite PDQ-39 score (p < 0.05). Muscle force, bradykinesia, and QOL were improved to a greater degree in those that performed high intensity eccentric resistance training compared to an active control group.

Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2009 Jun 2, online article ahead of print

Link to abstract

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