Lower body fast velocity concentric resistance training helped patients with multiple sclerosis walk more easily and with less catastrophic pain and symptomatic fatigue, according to a randomized controlled trial.
The results showed that following fast velocity concentric resistance training, the maximum isometric voluntary contraction and hand grip strength increased for all participants.
Moreover, the improvements in the arms, which were not trained, suggest that the training provides substantial neural gains to the patients.
The trial was published in the journal Acta Neurologica Scandinavica.
MS is a rare autoimmune disease characterized by the demyelination of the central nervous system. The symptoms of the disease include fatigue, muscle weakness, ataxia, and problems with mobility, balance, and cognition. The exact cause of the disease is not known, but researchers think that a combination of genetic and environmental factors plays a role in its development.
Read more about the etiology of MS
Fast velocity concentric resistance training is a new type of training that uses maximum-velocity contractions during the concentric phase of a movement. Recent studies have shown that this type of training can be beneficial in healthy adults and the elderly.
In the present study, a team of researchers analyzed the effect of the training on patients with MS. A total of 18 patients and 12 healthy volunteers were enrolled in a 10-week study where they either did fast velocity concentric resistance training or did not. Participants were 20 to 65 years of age.
The researchers measured the participants’ maximum isometric voluntary contraction during knee extensions, hand-grip strength, gait speed, walking endurance, fatigue, physical self-perception, and catastrophic pain.
Other data showed that speed of gait, walking endurance, symptomatic fatigue, and catastrophic pain improved in all participants who carried out the training compared to those who did not.
Andreu-Caravaca L, Ramos-Campo DJ, Chung LH, Manonelles P, Abellán-Aynés O, Rubio-Arias JÁ. Effects of fast-velocity concentric resistance training in people with multiple sclerosis: A randomized controlled trial. Acta Neurol Scand. Published online September 9, 2022. doi:10.1111/ane.13704
Effects of ten-weeks progressive resistance training on neuromuscular performance, mobility, heart rate variability and sleep quality in persons with multiple sclerosis. ClinicalTrials.gov. June 30, 2020. Updated October 8, 2020. Accessed September 22, 2022.