People with profound intellectual disabilities rarely experience a physically active lifestyle, and their long-term physical inactivity likely contributes to poor health. The authors developed and implemented a pilot exercise program for persons with a profound intellectual disability and conducted a study to evaluate the effort. The development of mobility, independent movement, and posture profiles resulted in a 16-week needs-led exercise program based on “rebound therapy,” with additional exercises, including active and passive exercise, walking, swimming, hydrotherapy, and team games. Study participants undertook 3–5 additional periods of low-impact exercise per week, providing moderate to low levels of activity judged in terms of energy costs. The program was evaluated using physiological measures (resting pulse, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, weight, height, body mass index, seizure activity, activity levels), counts of challenging behaviors, and by indices of quality of life and alertness outcomes. Participation in the exercise program was associated with decreases of frequency of challenging behaviors and increases in quality of life (freedom scores) and alertness. The authors concluded that barriers to the development and implementation of ongoing exercise programs in continuing care settings can be overcome by trained and motivated care staff.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities|
|Publication status||Published - 2007|
- Exercise program
- Profound intellectual disability
- Rebound therapy