Background Cerebral palsy (CP) has a high probability of resulting in lower extremity strength and walking deficits. Numerous studies have shown that gait training has the potential to improve the walking abilities of these children; however, the factors governing these improvements are unknown. Aims This study aimed to evaluate the relationship between change in lower extremity strength, walking speed and endurance of children with CP following gait training. Methods and procedures Eleven children with CP (GMFCS levels = II-III) completed a gait training protocol three days a week for six weeks. Outcome measures included a 10 m fast-as-possible walk test, 6 min walking endurance test and lower extremity strength. Outcomes and results The group results indicated there were improvements in walking speed, walking endurance and lower extremity strength. In addition, there was a positive correlation between percent change in lower extremity strength and walking speed and a negative correlation between the percent change in lower extremity strength and the child's age. Conclusions Our results imply that changes in lower extremity strength might be related to the degree of the walking speed changes seen after gait training. Younger children may be more likely to show improvements in lower extremity strength after gait training.
- Physical therapy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Clinical Psychology