Spinal Cord Injury, Physical Activity, and Quality of Life: A Systematic Review

in Kinesiology Review

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Jennifer R. Tomasone
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Natascha N. Wesch
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Kathleen A. Martin Ginis
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Luc Noreau
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Individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) tend to report poorer quality of life (QOL) than people without a physical disability. Leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) has been shown to improve the QOL of people with and without disabilities and chronic conditions. The purpose of this systematic review was to examine the LTPA-QOL relationship among people with SCI by focusing on both objective and subjective QOL for both global QOL and domain-specifc (physical, psychological, social) QOL. Results suggest that LTPA is significantly associated with increases in both objective and subjective QOL in global QOL and all three QOL domains, with relatively few studies demonstrating a negative or nonsignificant relationship. Recommendations for future QOL research and interventions are discussed.

Tomasone, Wesch, and Martin Ginis are with the Dept. of Kinesiology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Noreau is with the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation in Social Integration, Université Laval, Laval, Quebec, Canada.

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