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Patients with Parkinson’s Disease Can Benefit from Bicycling

According to a study, patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) would benefit from riding a bicycle since it improves motor performance, particularly important gait aspects.

Patients with Parkinson’s Disease Can Benefit from Bicycling
Photo: Senior Riding a Mountain Bike | InStyleHealth

The researchers conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of trials that looked at the effects of bicycling on people with Parkinson's disease. They looked through a variety of internet sources and chose 22 trials with a total of 505 patients to include.

The interventions lasted anywhere from one to twelve weeks (on average, 5.3 weeks), with one to five sessions per week. Three studies did not report bicycling cadence (revolutions per minute, rpm), but the remaining 18 did.

Cadence was measured in 10-rpm increments between 40 and 50 rpm and 80 and 90 rpm. Nine of the 18 studies focused on rpms between 70 and 80 or 80 and 90. In some studies, the intervention was said to be helped, while in others it was not.

Bicycling therapies had a significant effect on motor outcomes (standardized mean difference [SMD], 0.55, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.27 to 0.82; p0.001; I2, 53.5 percent) when data from all 22 studies were combined. The effect was diminished but remained significant when three studies that contributed to high heterogeneity were excluded (SMD, 0.35, 95 percent CI, 0.21–0.48; p0.001; I2, 0%).

Moreover, bicycling had a stronger positive effect on motor results (SMD, 0.42, 95 percent CI, 0.27–0.58) than on cognitive outcomes (SMD, 0.15, 95 percent CI, 0.11 to 0.4). Additionally, a lengthier treatment period resulted in greater advantages than a single therapy.

Balance, walking speed, and capacity, as well as the Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire 39 (PDQ-39) ratings, were improved with riding.


Source: NPJ Parkinsons Dis 2021;doi:10.1038/s41531-021-00222-6

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