Use of a device to support standing during a physical activity program to improve function of individuals with disabilities who reside in a nursing home.

date:2007 Jan;2(1):43-9.
author: Netz Y1, Argov E, Burstin A, Brown R, Heyman SN, Dunsky A, Alexander NB.
publication: Disabil Rehabil Assit Technol





To demonstrate the feasibility of an innovative program of physical activity using a standingsupport device targeted towards adult residents of a nursing home who are unable to transfer or stand independently.


Intervention study.


Thirteen residents, age 82 +/- 11 years, at the Beit Bayer Nursing Home, Jerusalem, Israel, who were unable to transfer or stand independently.


Eight-week observational period followed by 12-week physical activity performed while standing in a StandingSupport Device.


Manual Muscle Testing, joint range of motion, forward and lateral reach, time to stand independently, distance walked with a walker, Functional Independence Measure.


Compared to the observational period, significant post-intervention improvements were noted particularly in lower extremity muscle strength. Improvements in the Functional Independence Measure were noted in sphincter control, locomotion, mobility, motor score, and total score. Over 60% of those previously requiring assistance in standing became able to stand for an average of 1 min unassisted and walk an average of 14 m with a walker.


A pilot program of physical activity using a StandingSupport Device is feasible in selected stance-disabled older adult nursing home residents. Participants showed evidence of muscle strength and functional improvement. Future studies of the device with a concurrent examination of healthcare costs, functional improvement, and staff burden, are recommended.

One session of whole body vibration increases voluntary muscle strength transiently in patients with stroke.

date: 09/01/2007
author: Tihanyi TK, Horváth M, Fazekas G, Hortobágyi T, Tihanyi J.
publication: Clin Rehabil. 2007 Sep;21(9):782-93.
pubmed_ID: 17875558
OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of whole body vibration on isometric and eccentric torque and electromyography (EMG) variables of knee extensors on the affected side of stroke patients. DESIGN: A randomized controlled study. SETTING: A rehabilitation centre. SUBJECTS: Sixteen patients (age 58.2+/-9.4 years) were enrolled in an inpatient rehabilitation programme 27.2+/-10.4 days after a stroke. INTERVENTIONS: Eight patients were randomly assigned to the vibration group and received 20 Hz vibration (5 mm amplitude) while standing on a vibration platform for 1 minute six times in one session. Patients in the control group also stood on the platform but did not receive vibration. MAIN MEASURES: Maximum isometric and eccentric torque, rate of torque development, root-mean-squared EMG, median frequency of vastus lateralis, and co-activation of knee flexors. RESULTS: Isometric and eccentric knee extension torque increased 36.6% and 22.2%, respectively, after vibration (P<0.05) and 8.4% and 5.3% in the control group. Vibration increased EMG amplitude 44.9% and the median frequency in the vastus lateralis by 13.1% (all P<0.05) without changes in the control group (10.6% and 3.9%). Vibration improved the ability to generate mechanical work during eccentric contraction (17.5%). Vibration reduced biceps femoris co-activation during isometric (8.4%, ns) and eccentric (22.5%, P<0.05) contraction. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that one bout of whole body vibration can transiently increase voluntary force and muscle activation of the quadriceps muscle affected by a stroke.

Effect of dynamic weight bearing on neuromuscular activation after spinal cord injury.

date: 06/01/2007
author: Edwards LC, Layne CS.
publication: Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2007 Jun;86(6):499-506.
pubmed_ID: 17515690

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether individuals who have a spinal cord injury have neuromuscular and physiologic responses to a personalized exercise program during dynamic weight bearing (DWB). DESIGN: Four subjects with spinal cord injuries (T6, T5-6, C2-5, and C5) completed a 12-wk exercise program that included DWB. Surface electromyography (EMG) was recorded from the right gastrocnemius, biceps femoris, rectus femoris, rectus abdominus, and external oblique. Heart rate (HR) and blood pressure (BP) were recorded throughout training. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the data. RESULTS: The results of this study indicate that the subjects actively responded to exercise during DWB, as measured by EMG, HR, and BP. CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that exercise during DWB can induce physiologic and neuromuscular responses in individuals who have a spinal cord injury, and that exercise during DWB may serve as a preparatory program for more advanced rehabilitation.

Acute effects of whole-body vibration on muscle activity, strength, and power.

date: 05/20/2006
author: Cormie P, Deane RS, Triplett NT, McBride JM.
publication: J Strength Cond Res. 2006 May;20(2):257-61.
pubmed_ID: 16686550

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a single bout of whole-body vibration on isometric squat (IS) and countermovement jump (CMJ) performance. Nine moderately resistance-trained men were tested for peak force (PF) during the IS and jump height (JH) and peak power (PP) during the CMJ. Average integrated electromyography (IEMG) was measured from the vastus medialis, vastus lateralis, and biceps femoris muscles. Subjects performed the 2 treatment conditions, vibration or sham, in a randomized order. Subjects were tested for baseline performance variables in both the IS and CMJ, and were exposed to either a 30-second bout of whole-body vibration or sham intervention. Subjects were tested immediately following the vibration or sham treatment, as well as 5, 15, and 30 minutes posttreatment. Whole-body vibration resulted in a significantly higher (p < or = 0.05) JH during the CMJ immediately following vibration, as compared with the sham condition. No significant differences were observed in CMJ PP; PF during IS or IEMG of the vastus medialis, vastus lateralis, or biceps femoris during the CMJ; or IS between vibration and sham treatments. Whole-body vibration may be a potential warm-up procedure for increasing vertical JH. Future research is warranted addressing the influence of various protocols of whole-body vibration (i.e., duration, amplitude, frequency) on athletic performance.