Term of Award

1997

Degree Name

Master of Science in Exercise Science

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Department

Kinesiology

Committee Chair

W. Kent Guion

Committee Member 1

A. Barry Joyner

Committee Member 2

James L. McMillan

Abstract

The effects of resistance training in an individual with paraplegia. Paraplegia is a condition which results in the loss of upper body muscular strength and endurance. The subsequent sedentary lifestyle which follows the acquisition of paraplegia further exasperates the loss of these capacities. While vast amounts of research have examined the effects of resistance training on the able-bodied population, special populations have received much less attention. The following case study presents the effects of a seven week resistance training program in a subject with T7 paraplegia. The subject realized gains in muscular strength, muscular endurance, and balance as measured by a functional reach test. The subject reported decreased rates of perceived exertion during three activities of daily living. Little change in upper arm circumference or bicep/tricep skinfold measurements was noted. Overall, the subject reported an increased sense of well-being and independence. In conclusion, resistance training may provide paraplegics with an avenue in which to improve upper body muscular strength and endurance capacities and to ultimately improve his/her quality of life.

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