Training effects of a 12-week walking program on Parkinson disease patients and community-dwelling older adults

S. P. Cheng, C. Y. Yang, F. I. Tang, I. Ju Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Introducing evidence-based exercise guidelines of Parkinson's disease (PD) into clinical practice and community settings has been highlighted. AIM: This study tested the feasibility and compared the weekly effects of a 12-week walking training program on PD patients and community-dwelling seniors. DESIGN: A prospective quasi-experimental design was used. PD patients in Hoehn and Yahr Stage I through III (PG) and community-dwelling adults older than 65 were recruited (CG). METHODS: In the outpatient department of a hospital, the information of personal data, coordination test, and walking ability of participants were collected first. They then participated in a 36-session, 12-week treadmill walking training program. RESULTS: Weekly data of step length and velocity in PG and CG were collected. The walking training program achieved significant velocity (χ2 = 126.38, p < 0.001) and step length (χ2 = 27.27, p = 0.001) improvements in PG. Differences in improvement between PG and CG in terms of velocity (χ2 = 7.089, df = 1, p = 0.008) and step length (χ2 = 7.718, df = 1, p = 0.005) were also identified. CONCLUSION: The applicability of this 12-week walking program both for PD patients and community-dwelling older adults was identified. Conducting the economic evaluation and neurology studies of the 12-week walking program and test the effects of five-week walking program are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)967-976
Number of pages10
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2013


  • Parkinson disease
  • aged
  • rehabilitation
  • walking


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