Due to increased metabolic demands during walking, ∼50% of children with myelomeningocele transition to wheelchair use during adolescence/early adulthood. The purpose of our pilot study involving children with myelomeningocele was to determine: (a) energy expenditure needs during acute use of common assistive devices and (b) if walking poles are a feasible assistive device. Oxygen uptake was recorded for eight (5–12 years old) children in four conditions: independent, walker, crutches, and poles. Acute pole use did not significantly differ from independent walking net energy consumption or cost. Participants consumed more energy while walking with the walker than independently. Our pilot results suggest that (a) acute use of common assistive devices while walking increases energy consumption and cost versus independent and (b) poles are feasible assistive devices, resulting in slightly increased energy requirements. Poles may have provided “just enough” support with minimal change in energy requirements for our participants and, with practice, may enable children with myelomeningocele to remain community ambulators.
Jennifer K. Sansom and Beverly D. Ulrich
Krystn Orr, Katherine A. Tamminen, Shane N. Sweet, Jennifer R. Tomasone, and Kelly P. Arbour-Nicitopoulos
This study was guided by self-determination theory to explore the sport experiences of youth with a physical disability and the role of peers within this context. Interviews were conducted with eight youths using a relational mapping technique and analyzed using a deductive thematic approach. Sport peers were broadly defined by the youth as individuals from a large age range and of all abilities. Youth perceived their sport peers to have dynamic roles throughout their participation in sport. The perceived roles of these sport peers included supporting and thwarting basic psychological needs, and influencing the youths’ processing of sport internalization. Findings focus on the complexity of peer need-thwarting and need-supporting interactions in sport for youth with physical disabilities. Overall, peers have a multifaceted role in the sport experiences of youth identifying with a physical disability and may, in some cases, thwart youths’ basic psychological needs.
Aitor Iturricastillo, Javier Yanci, and Cristina Granados
The aim was to analyze the changes of physical performance and physiological responses during a high-intensity training task in wheelchair basketball (WB) players. Thirteen Spanish first division WB male players participated in this study. A test battery (change of direction ability, sprints, and sled towing) was performed to study neuromuscular responses before (pre) and after (post) the small-sided games (SSG). Furthermore, tympanic temperature and blood lactate concentration were measured before and immediately after players finished the SSG. The SSG tasks consisted in four players against four, 4 bouts of 4 min with 2 min of recovery periods. There was a 1.10% decline in performance in both 5- and 20-m sprints (p < .01; effect size [ES] ≤ 0.14), 1.82% decline in 5-m sled towing (p < .05; ES = 0.18), and 2.68% decline in 20-m sled towing (p < .01; ES = 0.27) between pre- and post-SSG. As in physical performance results, significant differences were observed between pre and post in physiological markers, with increasing tympanic temperature (36.21 ± 0.60 °C to 36.97 ± 0.59 °C; p < .001; ES = 1.27) and blood lactate concentrations (1.95 ± 1.30 mmol/L to 5.84 ± 2.04 mmol/L; p < .001; ES = 2.99) after SSG. The SSG produced a decrease in sprint and sled towing performance after 16 min of intense exercise. Moreover, the decrease in physical performance was accompanied with an increase in physiological responses. These neuromuscular responses could be similar in the real game; thus, coaching staff could benefit from this information when changing bench players.
Kelly P. Arbour-Nicitopoulos, Viviane Grassmann, Krystn Orr, Amy C. McPherson, Guy E. Faulkner, and F. Virginia Wright
The objective of this study was to comprehensively evaluate inclusive out-of-school time physical activity programs for children/youth with physical disabilities. A search of the published literature was conducted and augmented by international expertise. A quality appraisal was conducted; only studies with quality ratings ≥60% informed our best practice recommendations. Seventeen studies were included using qualitative (n = 9), quantitative (n = 5), or mixed (n = 3) designs. Programs had a diversity of age groups, group sizes, and durations. Most programs were recreational level, involving both genders. Rehabilitation staff were the most common leaders. Outcomes focused on social skills/relationships, physical skill development, and psychological well-being, with overall positive effects shown in these areas. The best practice recommendations are consistent with an abilities-based approach emphasizing common group goals and interests; cooperative activities; mastery-oriented, individualized instruction; and developmentally appropriate, challenging activities. Results indicate that inclusive out-of-school time physical activity programs are important for positive psychosocial and physical skill development of children/youth with physical disabilities.
Wesley J. Wilson
Shaunna M. Burke, Jennifer Brunet, Amanda Wurz, Christina Butler, and Andrea Utley
The benefits of informal physical activity during recovery from childhood cancer have rarely been investigated. This study adopted a multiple case study approach to explore the impact of recreational cycling on childhood cancer survivors’ experiences of well- and ill-being. Three semistructured interviews were conducted over a 3-month period with four survivors to explore their experiences of physical, psychological, and social well- and ill-being. Within-case analysis followed by cross-case analysis identified three themes that captured their well- and ill-being experiences with recreational cycling and cancer: (a) cultivating feelings and emotions, (b) experiencing physical changes, and (c) encountering positive and negative social interactions. The results from this study show that recreational cycling may be a useful adjunct to conventional treatments for the self-management of multiple domains of well- and ill-being during recovery from childhood cancer.
ZáNean McClain, E. Andrew Pitchford, E. Kipling Webster, Daniel W. Tindall, and Seo Hee Lee
Annemarie M.H. de Witte, Monique A.M. Berger, Marco J.M. Hoozemans, Dirkjan H.E.J. Veeger, and Lucas H.V. van der Woude
The aim of this study was to determine to what extent mobility performance is influenced by offensive or defensive situations and ball possession and to what extent these actions are different for the field positions. From video analysis, the relative duration of the various wheelchair movements during team offense/defense and individual ball possession was compared in 56 elite wheelchair basketball players. A two-way analysis of variance indicated that during offense, the guards and forwards performed longer driving forward than during defense. Overall, centers stood still longer during offense than during defense. Without ball, centers performed driving forward longer than with ball possession. It is concluded that offense, defense, and ball possession influenced mobility performance for the different field positions. These differences can be used to design specific training protocols. Furthermore, field positions require potentially different specific wheelchair configurations to improve performance.
Hyokju Maeng, E. Kipling Webster, E. Andrew Pitchford, and Dale A. Ulrich
The purpose of this study was to examine the inter- and intrarater reliabilities of the Test of Gross Motor Development—third edition (TGMD-3). The TGMD-3 was administered to 10 typically developing children. Five raters with experience using the Test of Gross Motor Development—second edition (TGMD-2) scored the digitally recorded performances and then rescored the same performances after a period of 2 weeks. Intraclass correlation (ICC) was used to examine both inter- and intrarater reliabilities of scores. Interrater reliability for the total score, locomotor subscale, and ball skills subscale (ICC: 0.92–0.96) were all excellent, while individual skills (ICC: 0.51–0.93) had fair-to-excellent reliability. Intrarater reliability across all raters was also excellent (ICC: 0.77–0.98) but varied widely for individual raters (ICC: 0.28–1.00) including multiple examples of poor reliability. While raters experienced with the TGMD-2 can produce consistent scores for TGMD-3 total scale and subscales, additional training is needed to improve skill-specific reliability.