2011 Volume 23 Issue 2 Pages 307-311
[Purpose] This study examined the effects of six weeks strength training with elastic bands on different measures of strength manifestations, fatigue and functionality of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. [Subjects] Sixteen MS patients (average age 44 years; range 33-56) with a diagnosis confirmed by a neurologist volunteered as subjects. They had mild to moderate disability and participated three times a week in a six-week elastic band strength training program. [Methods] Elastic band training progression was based on training volume using elastic bands of resistance of approximately 40% of a patient's previously measured maximal voluntary contraction. Outcome assessments included: maximal voluntary contraction with surface electromyography of the right and left legs, average and peak power with different submaximal loads of each leg, fatigue perception and functionality by the Timed Up-and-Go test. [Results] After the six-week strength training with elastic bands, average power with low load (98 N), peak power with very low load (49 N) and functionality had improved significantly. [Conclusion] A short and light training program using elastic bands can improve muscle function without injury and can be a good therapy for improving functionality of multiple sclerosis patients.