Title: Benefits of swimming for children with cerebral palsy: a pilot study
Authors: Declerck, Marlies ×
Feys, Hilde
Daly, Daniel #
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Sportska Akademija Beograd
Series Title: Serbian Journal of Sports Sciences vol:7 issue:2 pages:57-69
Abstract: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a swimming program on body function, activity
and Quality of Life (QOL), in children diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. Seven children (female/male: 4/3; Median
10.2 years old; Gross Motor Function Classification Scale I to III) participated in a 6-week swimming intervention
using a case series design. Outcome measures were, for body function level: handgrip strength; for activity
level: unimanual speed performance, walking capacity, gross motor function and adjustment and function in the
water; and QOL. There was no drop-out during the intervention. Mental adjustment in the water and swimming
skills improved by 29% (p < 0.05) after the intervention. This effect remained at follow-up (p < 0.05).
Subdimension D (standing) of the Gross Motor Function Measurement-88 improved significantly (3%). All other
activity measurements showed trends toward improvement. QOL improved in five out of seven subdimensions
of one questionnaire. To conclude, this pilot study including a small number of participants showed
improvements in adjustment and function in the water and positive trends for activity level and QOL after a 6-
week swimming program. Future research on a larger population could be worthwhile.
ISSN: 1820-6301
VABB publication type: VABB-1
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Research Group for Neuromotor Rehabilitation
Physical Activity, Sports & Health Research Group
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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