Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
from September 2014
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2012) 11, 751 - 758

Research article
Efficacy of Home-Based Kinesthesia, Balance & Agility Exercise Training Among Persons with Symptomatic Knee Osteoarthritis
Matthew W. Rogers1, Nauris Tamulevicius2, Stuart J. Semple1, , Zarko Krkeljas3
Author Information
1 Department of Biokinetics & Sport Science, University of Zululand, KwaDlangezwa, South Africa
2 School of Human Performance and Leisure Sciences, Barry University, Miami Shores, USA
3 School for Biokinetics, Recreation and Sport Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa

Stuart J. Semple
✉ Associate Professor, Department of Biokinetics & Sport Science University of Zululand, KwaDlangezwa, 3886 South Africa
Publish Date
Received: 08-05-2012
Accepted: 21-07-2012
Published (online): 01-12-2012

The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of a home-based kinesthesia, balance and agility (KBA) exercise program to improve symptoms among persons age ≥ 50 years with knee osteoarthritis (OA). Forty-four persons were randomly assigned to 8-weeks, 3 times per week KBA, resistance training (RT), KBA + RT, or Control. KBA utilized walking agility exercises and single-leg static and dynamic balancing. RT used elastic resistance bands for open chain lower extremity exercises. KBA + RT performed selected exercises from each technique. Control applied inert lotion daily. Outcomes included the OA specific WOMAC Index of Pain, Stiffness, and Physical Function (PF), community activity level, exercise self-efficacy, self-report knee stability, and 15m get up & go walk (GUG). Thirty-three participants [70.7 (SD 8.5) years] completed the trial. Analysis of variance comparing baseline, mid-point, and follow-up measures revealed significant (p < 0.05) improvements in WOMAC scores among KBA, RT, KBA + RT, and Control, with no differences between groups. However, Control WOMAC improvements peaked at mid-point, whereas improvement in the exercise conditions continued at 8-weeks. There were no significant changes in community activity level. Only Control improved exercise self-efficacy. Knee stability was improved in RT and Control. GUG improved in RT and KBA+RT. These results indicate that KBA, RT, or a combination of the two administered as home exercise programs are effective in improving symptoms and quality of life among persons with knee OA. Control results indicate a strong placebo effect in the short term. A combination of KBA and RT should be considered as part of the rehabilitation program, but KBA or RT alone may be appropriate for some patients. Studies with more statistical power are needed to confirm or refute these results. Patient presentation, preferences, costs, and convenience should be considered when choosing an exercise rehabilitation approach for persons with knee OA.

Key words: Exercise therapy, rehabilitation, postural balance, resistance training

           Key Points
  • Kinesthesia, balance and agility programs, as well as lower extremity resistance training programs, or a combination of the two appeared equally effective in reducing symptoms of knee osteoarthritis.
  • A placebo control intervention also appeared effective, but improvements reached a plateau at mid-point (4 weeks), unlike exercise program improvement which continued between mid-point and follow-up (8 weeks).
  • Our results, along with two previous small studies, provide preliminary evidence that kinesthesia, balance, and agility programs without additional resistance training could be effective in treating knee osteoarthritis symptoms.
  • Some evidence was found to suggest programs that include resistance training may be more effective for improving function, but more research is needed to confirm or refute this finding.
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