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Does high intensity interval treadmill walking improve upper extremity function in chronic stroke survivors?

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This study examined upper extremity function, including manual dexterity, in chronic stroke survivors following a 10-week high intensity interval treadmill walking intervention. Six stroke survivors completed two 35-minute high intensity interval treadmill walking sessions based on ventilatory threshold per week.

This study examined upper extremity function, including manual dexterity, in chronic stroke survivors following a 10-week high intensity interval treadmill walking intervention. Six stroke survivors completed two 35-minute high intensity interval treadmill walking sessions based on ventilatory threshold per week. In addition, each participant completed one 30-minute low-intensity walking session at home. Participants completed upper extremity and manual dexterity testing at baseline, acutely, and after the 10-week intervention. Contrary to the prediction made, significant improvements in both paretic and non-paretic upper-extremity function including manual dexterity were not found. While time to complete the Nine Hole Peg Test (9HPB) somewhat decreased and the number of blocks transferred in the Box and Blocks Test (BBT) slightly increased, results were not found to be statistically significant. The results do suggest, nonetheless, that high intensity interval treadmill training may lead to improvements in upper extremity function and potentially daily living in chronic stroke survivors.

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2016-05

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Contributing to a meta-analysis on the effects of acute physical exercise on the executive functions of preadolescent children, adolescents and adults

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The purpose of this study, originally, was to contribute to the completion of a meta-analysis conducted by Mara Wierstra from the University of Virginia. Wierstra had requested individual participant data from two separate studies conducted in our lab: "Acute bouts

The purpose of this study, originally, was to contribute to the completion of a meta-analysis conducted by Mara Wierstra from the University of Virginia. Wierstra had requested individual participant data from two separate studies conducted in our lab: "Acute bouts of assisted cycling improves cognitive and upper extremity movement functions in adolescents with Down syndrome" and "Assisted Cycling Therapy (ACT) improves inhibition in adolescents with autism spectrum disorder." From the data requested, the participants were required to complete three separate tests (i.e., Tower of London, Trail Making Task and the Stroop Test). After compiling the data and sending it to her, we decided to conduct a small meta-analysis of our own, drawing connecting conclusions from the data from the two studies. We concluded that observationally our data suggest an advantage for ACT over voluntary cycling and no cycling across two separate populations (i.e., Autism Spectrum Disorder and Down syndrome), and across different measures of executive function (i.e., Stroop Test, Trail Making Test, and Tower of London). The data suggest that the ACT interventions may promote the upregulation of neurotropic factors leading to neurogenesis in the prefrontal cortex of the brain.

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2016-12

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Effects of Assisted Cycle Therapy (ACT) on Upper Extremity Function and Dexterity in Stroke Survivors

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Upper extremity function is vital for activities of daily living especially in stroke survivors. An innovative way to improve upper extremity function has been shown with Assisted Cycle Therapy (ACT). This is among the first study to examine ACT in

Upper extremity function is vital for activities of daily living especially in stroke survivors. An innovative way to improve upper extremity function has been shown with Assisted Cycle Therapy (ACT). This is among the first study to examine ACT in stroke survivors. 13 stroke survivors performed ACT, VC, and NC and pre and post measures of upper extremity function were conducted with the box and blocks test (BBT). The results showed that non-paretic upper extremity improved its function after ACT and VC, but not after NC. For the paretic arm, while the results did not reach conventional levels of significance, improvements in upper extremity function following ACT more so than VC or NC. These results were interpreted to suggest that ACT resulted in increased production of BDNF in the motor cortex, which resulted in improvements in global motor function.

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2016-12

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Effects of Assisted Cycling Therapy on Inhibition in Stroke Survivors

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Executive function is vital for activities of daily living especially in stroke survivors because it is critical to everyday tasks (e.g., driving, cooking, etc.). An innovative way to improve executive function may be Assisted Cycling Therapy (ACT). This is among

Executive function is vital for activities of daily living especially in stroke survivors because it is critical to everyday tasks (e.g., driving, cooking, etc.). An innovative way to improve executive function may be Assisted Cycling Therapy (ACT). This is among the first studies to use a Stroop task to measure inhibition, selective attention, and information processing speed following ACT in stroke survivors. Twenty-three participants post-stroke performed ACT, voluntary cycling (VC) and no cycling (NC). The results showed that there were improvements in the Stroop task following an acute session of ACT but not following VC or NC. These results suggest that ACT resulted in increased afferent information which may have resulted in increased arousal and excitability in regions of the prefrontal cortex. These factors have been shown to improve executive function.

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2017-05