Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Influence of a 16-Week Community-Based Swim Training Program on Body Fat in Children and Adolescents With Intellectual Disabilities

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Abstract

Casey AF, Rasmussen R, Mackenzie SJ, Glenn J. Dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry to measure the influence of a 16-week community-based swim training program on body fat in children and adolescents with intellectual disabilities. Objective: To use dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) to measure the effects of a 16-week community-based swim training program on percent body fat in children and adolescents with intellectual disability (ID). Design: Convenience sample. Setting: University sport complex and exercise science laboratory. Participants: Children and adolescents (n=8; mean age ± SD, 13.1 ± 3.4y), 2 girls and 6 boys with ID, of varying fat levels (11%-35%). Intervention: A swim training program lasting for the duration of 16 weeks with three 1-hour sessions held at a 25-m pool each week. Main Outcome Measure: Assessing percent body fat at pretest and posttest through the use of DXA. Results: After the 16-week exercise training program, we observed a 1.2% median increase in body fat percentage with a range from -0.3% to 4.5%. Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-ranks tests suggest that these results are statistically significant (P=.039; exact). Conclusions: Exercise training alone proved ineffectual in reducing percent body fat in 8 children and adolescents with ID. Further research should consider implementing a combined diet and exercise program. To gauge the effectiveness of intervention programs, valid methods and complex measurement tools such as DXA should be used to assess changes in percent body fat in such a heterogeneous population. © 2010 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine.

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Casey, A. F., Rasmussen, R., Mackenzie, S. J., & Glenn, J. (2010). Dual-Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry to Measure the Influence of a 16-Week Community-Based Swim Training Program on Body Fat in Children and Adolescents With Intellectual Disabilities. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 91(7), 1064–1069. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apmr.2010.04.006

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