The Health Benefits of Racerunning for Those With a Moderate-To-Severe Neurodevelopmental Disability

Thacker, Elizabeth (2022) The Health Benefits of Racerunning for Those With a Moderate-To-Severe Neurodevelopmental Disability. Masters thesis, University of Gloucestershire. doi:10.46289/9F9S7RP7

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Introduction: Neurodevelopmental disabilities can cause restrictions in mobility, increasing the risk of individuals developing secondary health conditions. For individuals with moderate-to-severe neurodevelopmental disabilities, it can be difficult to find activities which improve physical health and reduce this risk. RaceRunning is a developing disability sport designed specifically for individuals with moderate-to-severe disabilities, enabling them to move independently with the potential to improve physical health outcomes. Aim: The present study aims to investigate the effect of RaceRunning on physical health in individuals with moderate-to-severe neurodevelopmental disabilities. Method: Five males and 4 females with neurodevelopmental disabilities (18.1 ± 9.8y) completed a 12-week intervention consisting of a 1-hour RaceRunning session per week. Sessions involved a warm-up section, a skills section and a cool down. At baseline and 12 weeks, resting heart rate, blood pressure and thigh and calf circumference were measured. Isometric strength in both legs were also recorded. Cardiorespiratory response to RaceRunning was assessed via a 6-minute RaceRunning test and kinematics of running technique were recorded and analysed during the test. Results: Significant decreases in resting heart rate were observed post intervention (p = 0.038) with no changes in blood pressure (systolic = p = 0.242) (diastolic = p=0.846). No significant differences were observed in thigh (left = p=0.922, right = p =0.404) or calf circumference (left = p = 0.377, right = p = 0.310). Knee flexion isometric strength was significantly higher in both left (p = 0.021) and right (p = 0.006) legs but only significantly higher in the left knee for knee extension (p = 0.018). Plantarflexion saw no significantly different (left = p = 0.139, right = p = 0.075) changes in isometric strength. There was no significant change in the 6-minute RaceRunning test and kinematic changes were only observed in the knee following 12 weeks of RaceRunning. Conclusion: This preliminary evidence suggests there may be some health benefits of RaceRunning to those with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Recruiting a larger cohort and assessing other measures of health may better reflect these changes.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Thesis Advisors:
Thesis AdvisorEmailURL
Uncontrolled Keywords: Neurodevelopmental disability; Racerunning; Mobility; Health benefits
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry > RC346 Neurology. Diseases of the nervous system
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > School of Education and Science
Depositing User: Kamila Niekoraniec
Date Deposited: 01 May 2024 08:54
Last Modified: 01 May 2024 08:54

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