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  • Author: Kathleen Fitzgerald x
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Fuzhong Li, Peter Harmer, K. John Fisher, Junheng Xu, Kathleen Fitzgerald and Naruepon Vongjaturapat

The primary objective of this study was to provide preliminary evaluation of the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of a newly developed Tai Chi-based exercise program for older adults with Parkinson’s disease (PD). Using a one-group pretest-posttest design, 17 community-dwelling adults (mean age 71.51 years) with mild to moderate idiopathic PD (Stage I, II, or III on the Hoehn and Yahr scale) and stable medication use completed a 5-day, 90-min/day Tai Chi exercise-evaluation program. Outcome measures included face-to-face exit interviews on appropriateness and safety and physical performance (i.e., 50-ft speed walk, up-and-go, functional reach). At the end of this brief intervention, exercise adherence was 100% and the program was shown to be safe. Exit interviews indicated that the program was well received by all participants with respect to program appropriateness, participant satisfaction and enjoyment, and intentions to continue. Furthermore, a significant pretest-to-posttest change was observed at the end of the 5-day program in all three physical-performance measures (p < .05). The results of this pilot evaluation suggest that Tai Chi is an appropriate physical activity for older adults with PD and might also be useful as a therapeutic exercise modality for improving and maintaining physical function. These preliminary findings warrant further investigation.

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Nicola Furlan, Mark Waldron, Kathleen Shorter, Tim J. Gabbett, John Mitchell, Edward Fitzgerald, Mark A. Osborne and Adrian J. Gray

Purpose:

To investigate temporal variation in running intensity across and within halves and evaluate the agreement between match-analysis indices used to identify fluctuations in running intensity in rugby sevens.

Methods:

Data from a 15-Hz global positioning system (GPS) were collected from 12 elite rugby sevens players during the IRB World Sevens Series (N = 21 full games). Kinematic (eg, relative distance [RD]) and energetic (eg, metabolic power [MP]) match-analysis indices were determined from velocity–time curves and used to investigate between-halves variations. Mean MP and RD were used to identify peak 2-minute periods of play. Adjacent 2-minute periods (prepeak and postpeak) were compared with peak periods to identify changes in intensity. MP and RD were expressed relative to maximal oxygen uptake (V̇O2max) and speed at V̇O2max, respectively, and compared in their ability to describe the intensity of peak periods and their temporal occurrence.

Results:

Small to moderate reductions were present for kinematic (RD; 8.9%) and energetic (MP; 6%) indices between halves. Peak periods (RD = 130 m/min, MP =13 W/kg) were higher (P < .001) than the match average (RD = 94 m/min, MP = 9.5 W/kg) and the prepeak and postpeak periods (P < .001). RD underestimated the intensity of peak periods compared with MP (bias 16%, limits of agreement [LoA] ± 6%). Peak periods identified by RD and MP were temporally dissociated (bias 21 s, LoA ± 212 s).

Conclusions:

The findings suggest that running intensity varies between and within halves; however, the index used will influence both the magnitude and the temporal identification of peak periods.

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Samuel W. Logan, Christina M. Hospodar, Kathleen R. Bogart, Michele A. Catena, Heather A. Feldner, Jenna Fitzgerald, Sarah Schaffer, Bethany Sloane, Benjamin Phelps, Joshua Phelps and William D. Smart

Background: Go Baby Go is a community program that provides modified ride-on cars to young children with disabilities. Aims: (1) To describe the real world modified ride-on car usage of young children with disabilities; (2) To compare subjectively reported modified ride-on car usage recorded by parents with objectively reported usage based on electronic tracking data. Methods: 14 young children (1–3 years old) with disabilities used a modified ride-on car for three months. Results: On average, parent-reported activity log data indicated that children used the modified ride-on car for 17.8 minutes per session (SD = 9.9) and 195.1 total minutes (SD = 234.8) over three months. Objective tracking data indicated 16.5 minutes per session (SD = 8.6) and 171.4 total minutes (SD = 206.1) over three months. No significant difference of modified ride-on car usage was found between parent-reported activity log data and objective tracking; yet, the mean absolute difference between tracking methods was 96 minutes (SD = 8.6) and suggests over- or under-reporting of families. Children used the modified ride-on car more in the first half compared to the second half of the three-month period (p < .05). Conclusions: This study may inform future research studies and local chapters of the Go Baby Go community program.