For many people with multiple sclerosis (MS), maintaining the ability to walk is critical to quality-of-life. Hip weakness is often the culprit of walking deficits, but new research from Kennedy Krieger Institute shows that individuals with MS can significantly increase hip and leg strength with an 8-week resistance training program (RTP) using only resistance bands. The use of these bands makes the RTP accessible, inexpensive, and available to group settings for patients with variable levels of disability.

Access the video here

Access the video here

Researchers Kathleen M. Zackowski, PhD, OTR, MSCS and Jennifer Keller, PT, MS, of the Institute’s Center for Movement Studies developed a video format manuscript, published in the Journal of Visualized Experiments, illustrating in great detail how to systematically structure and evaluate a RTP. This resource is now accessible to patients, therapists and other providers. Study data show that the RTP was effective for individuals with a variety of levels of MS-related disability, from mild to severely involved, using hand held dynamometry pre- and post-RTP to quantitatively evaluate changes. The findings are the initial data from a larger study on MS, and the researchers plan to compare how matched controls change in response to the same program. They are also working to evaluate responsiveness to the program using MRI in combination with quantitative clinical tools.

The video can be found at this website:

The video can also be seen at the Zackowski Lab website:

Find more information at: Keller J, Fritz N, Chiang CC, et al. Adapted resistance training improves strength in eight weeks in individuals with multiple sclerosis. J Vis Exp. 2015 (107), e53449, doi:10.3791/53449

[Source: Kennedy Krieger Institute]