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The Effects of Underwater Treadmill Walking Training with Aquatic Cuff Weights on Balance and Walking Abilities in Stroke Patients
J Korean Soc Phys Med 2018;13(1):89-98
Published online February 28, 2018;
© 2018 Korean Society of Physical Medicine.

Eui-Seob Yoon, PT⋅Jong-Duk Choi, PhD, PT1†

Dept. of Physical Therapy, Graduate School of Health and Medicine, Daejeon University
1Dept. of Physical Therapy, College of Health and Medical Science, Daejeon University
Received November 13, 2017; Revised December 1, 2017; Accepted December 30, 2017.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
PURPOSE: While underwater, patients with hemiplegia experience unwanted limb flotation on their paretic side due to low muscle mass and high body fat. However, only a limited number of studies support the effectiveness of this practice. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine how the balance and walking abilities of patients with hemiplegia due to stroke were affected by wearing an aquatic cuff on their ankles during underwater treadmill walking.
METHODS: Twenty stroke patients were divided into an experimental group comprised of 20 patients who would wear an aquatic cuff and a control group comprised of 10 patients without an aquatic cuff. Both groups underwent a six-week intervention for 30 minutes a day three times a week. To evaluate the groups’ balance and walking abilities before and after the intervention, the 10 m walking test, timed up go test, Berg Balance Scale, functional reaching test, and the GAITRite system were used.
RESULTS: The results of the 10 m walking test, timed up go test, differences between the left and right gait cycles, and functional reaching test showed statistically significant differences in the rates of change between the two groups (p<.05).
CONCLUSION: The study results suggest that underwater treadmill training in stroke patients can be more effective when they wear an aquatic cuff on their ankles compared to wearing no aquatic cuff.
Keywords : Balance, Gait, Stroke, Treadmill gait training

February 2018, 13 (1)
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