Promoting physical activity in an adolescent and a young adult with physical disabilities
Background: We sought to describe the design of the Active Lifestyle and Sports Participation (ALSP) intervention for adolescents and young adults with physical disabilities, and to present the first 2 cases. Methods: A 17-year-old boy with myelomeningocele and hydrocephalus and a 23-year-old woman with unilateral cerebral palsy were enrolled into the ALSP intervention, a personalized intervention designed to improve physical activity and fitness levels. Main outcome measures were self-reported physical activity and aerobic fitness. Fitness was determined by submaximal 6-minute walk or wheel test and by maximal cycle or arm ergometer-exercise test. Participants rated satisfaction with the intervention on a Likert-type numeric scale from 1 to 10. Results: Improvements in self-reported physical activity were 51% and 75% for the male and female participant, respectively. Respective improvements in submaximal exercise were 16% and 9%. Maximal exercise increased 39% in the male participant but did not increase in the female participant. Satisfaction with the intervention was rated moderate-good to excellent. Conclusion: Data for the first 2 cases suggested that ALSP intervention seemed feasible to offer in an outpatient rehabilitation department, and the effectiveness may be promising. Future studies should determine the short- and long-term effectiveness of the intervention.