Improvements of muscle strength predicted benefits in HRQOL and postural balance in women with fibromyalgia: an 8-month randomized controlled trial

The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether changes in muscle strength due to 32 weeks of supervised aquatic training predicted improvements on health-related quality of life (HRQOL).  Thirty women with FM aged 50.8 ± 8.7 years were randomly assigned to an experimental group, performing 3 weekly sessions of 60 min of warm-water exercise; or to a control group. HRQOL was evaluated using the Short Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36). Maximal unilateral isokinetic strength was measured at 60°/s and 210°/s in the knee extensors and flexors in concentric action and at 60°/s in knee extensors eccentric action. Postural balance was evaluated using the one-leg stance, eyes closed.

The results showed that a long-lasting exercise therapy in warm water produced relevant gains in muscle strength at low velocities of movements, some of which predicted improvements in physical problems, emotional problems, mental health and balance.

Rheumatology 2009 48(9):1147-1151

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