What are the optimum training parameters of progressive resistance exercise for changes in muscle function, activity and participation in people with cerebral palsy? A systematic review and meta-regression
Reviewed by Prue Morgan
Citation: Bania TA, Taylor NF, Chiu HC, Charitaki G. What are the optimum training parameters of progressive resistance exercise for changes in muscle function, activity and participation in people with cerebral palsy? A systematic review and meta-regression. Physiotherapy. 2023 Jun;119:1-16. doi: 10.1016/j.physio.2022.10.001. Epub 2022 Oct 19. PMID: 36696699.
Study type/population: This systematic review explored the effect of a muscle strengthening program, progressive resistance exercise (PRE), on a range of outcomes of people of any age with cerebral palsy (CP).
Key findings: From the 16 research trials (n=504 participants), results suggested that PRE improved muscle strength when compared to no training, and that the increase in muscle strength was maintained an average of 11 weeks after training stopped. However, PRE did not have an effect on measures of gross motor function or participation. No clear link between PRE dosage (e.g. training intensity) and the effects on muscle strength was found. When compared to other therapies, there were no improvements in any outcomes. Importantly, there were no safety concerns reported.
Translation to practice: PRE is safe and increases muscle strength in people with CP, which is maintained after training stops. The amount of increase in muscle strength is not related to PRE intensity or dose. Consideration of other factors such as social interaction or familiarity with an exercise environment may be required to demonstrate improvement in activity or participation. Of note, there was a lack of evidence about PRE being effective in older adults with CP, or in people with CP who cannot walk.