Effectiveness of Functional Power Training on Walking Ability in Young Children With Cerebral Palsy: Study Protocol of a Double-Baseline Trial

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Abstract

Purpose:

To evaluate the effect of functional high-velocity resistance (power) training to improve walking ability of young children with cerebral palsy.

Methods:

Twenty-two children with bi- or unilateral spastic cerebral palsy, Gross Motor Function Classification System levels I and II, aged 4 to 10 years will be recruited. A double-baseline design will be used to compare a 14-week functional power training (3 times a week) program with a 14-week usual care period and a 14-week follow-up period. The power exercises will be loaded and performed at 50% to 70% of the maximum unloaded speed. Load will be increased when exercises are performed faster than 70% of the unloaded speed. Primary outcomes will be sprinting capacity (15-m Muscle Power Sprint Test) and goal attainment scaling score of walking-related treatment goals. Secondary outcomes will be walking speed (1-min walk test), endurance (10-m shuttle run test), gross motor function, lower-limb strength, and parent-reported mobility.

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