Exercise equipment preferences among adults with spinal cord injury
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STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate exercise equipment preferences and compare cardiometabolic demand for passive hybrid and arm-only exercise among adults with paraplegia (PP) and those with tetraplegia (TP). SETTING: Four community exercise programmes. METHODS: Thirty-six adults (mean age: 41.1±12.1 years) with chronic (11.4±10.7 years post injury) TP (C3-C8; n=17) or PP (T3-T12; n=19) were recruited. Participants completed 20 min of submaximal aerobic exercise at moderate to vigorous intensity on four types of aerobic exercise equipment: arm cycle ergometer (ACE), arm glider (AG), arm-leg recumbent stepper (ALRS), and arm-leg cycle ergometer (ALCE). Participants also completed 3 sets of 10 repetitions of resistance exercise using wall pulleys (WP) and weight stack (WS) equipment. A questionnaire was administered to evaluate equipment preference. Heart rate (HR) and oxygen uptake (VO2) were measured in a subset of participants (n=9) during submaximal aerobic exercise. RESULTS: Arm-only exercise modes were perceived as being safer than passive hybrid exercise modes. There were no differences in perceived enjoyment between equipment types and groups. There were significant group but not equipment differences in HR (TP: 101.4 bpm; PP: 124.9 bpm) and VO2 (TP: 6.5 ml•kg(-1)•min(-1); PP: 10.5 mL•kg(-1)•min(-1)) during submaximal aerobic exercise. CONCLUSION: In this cross-community assessment of exercise equipment preferences after spinal cord injury (SCI), arm-only exercise modes were perceived as safer than hybrid exercise modes and there were no differences between equipment types in physiological responses.
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