A comparison of 2 circuit exercise training techniques for eliciting matched metabolic responses in persons with paraplegia

Mark S. Nash, Patrick L. Jacobs, Jeffrey M. Woods, James E. Clark, Tanya A. Pray, Alex E. Pumarejo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Objective: To test whether acute metabolic (Vo2), chronotropic (heart rate), and perceptual (rating of perceived exertion; RPE) responses to exercise by persons with paraplegia differ when the exercise is on a multistation isoinertial exercise system (MultiGym) or on a customized system of Thera-Band® resistance bands (ElasticGym). Design: Within-subjects comparison of 2 treatments. Setting: Academic medical center. Participants: Sixteen men and 1 woman with complete paraplegia (T4-L1), as defined by the American Spinal Injury Association. Interventions: A circuit resistance training (CRT) program for persons with paraplegia was adapted to both a MultiGym and a customized ElasticGym. Exercises used for training and testing used 6 resistance maneuvers at 50% of the 1-repetition maximum (1-RM), with interposed rapid arm spinning. Subjects were habituated to both conditions for 2 weeks before testing on randomized nonconsecutive days. Main Outcome Measures: Vo2 (L/min) was measured by portable spirometry, heart rate (beats/min) by a chest strap monitor, and RPE by the Borg Scale of Perceived Exertion (6-20). Results: No significant effects of test condition on average Vo2 or heart rate were observed, with differences between conditions reflecting only .08L/min and 6.4 beats/min, respectively. Average RPE was significantly higher in testing under the ElasticGym condition (P < .05). Conclusions: CRT on a customized ElasticGym system elicited acute metabolic and chronotropic responses that did not differ from responses to exercise on a MultiGym, though RPE was greater with the ElasticGym.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-209
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 17 2002


  • Exercise
  • Paraplegia
  • Rehabilitation
  • Spinal cord injuries

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation


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