Evaluation of Cooper 12-Minute Walk/Run Test as a Marker of Cardiorespiratory Fitness in Young Urban Children with Persistent Asthma

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Objective:To evaluate Cooper 12-minute run/walk test (CT12) as a one-time estimate of cardiorespiratory fitness and marker of fitness change compared with treadmill fitness testing in young children with persistent asthma.Design:A cohort of urban children with asthma participated in the asthma and exercise program and a subset completed pre- and postintervention fitness testing.Setting:Treadmill fitness testing was conducted by an exercise physiologist in the fitness laboratory at an academic children's hospital. CT12 was conducted in a college recreation center gymnasium.Participants:Forty-five urban children with persistent asthma aged 7 to 14 years participated in exercise interventions. A subset of 19 children completed pre- and postintervention exercise testing.Interventions:Participants completed a 9-week exercise program where they participated in either swimming or golf 3 days a week for 1 hour. A subset of participants completed fitness testing by 2 methods before and after program completion.Main Outcome Measures:CT12 results (meters), maximal oxygen consumption (V̇o2max) (mL·kg−1·min−1), and treadmill exercise time (minutes).Results:CT12 and maximal oxygen consumption were moderately correlated (preintervention: 0.55, P = 0.003; postintervention: 0.48, P = 0.04) as one-time measures of fitness. Correlations of the tests as markers of change over time were poor and nonsignificant.Conclusion:In children with asthma, CT12 is a reasonable one-time estimate of fitness but a poor marker of fitness change over time.

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