Ana Avendano, Whitley Stone, Mark Schafer. Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY.

BACKGROUND: People with Down syndrome (DS) are at greater risk for obesity and function declines. Exercise professionals are in need of identifying fun, engaging activities that people with DS will enjoy to combat sedentary behaviors. Cardiodrumming is a low-impact, cardiovascular-based exercise modality that is relevant to all populations as intensity of effort is self-regulated. METHODS: Participants with DS (n = 10) were assessed for function using the modified Berg balance test (mBERG), Established Populations for Epidemiological Studies (EPESE), Timed Up and Go (TUG) at baseline and at the end of the eight-week Cardiodrumming intervention. Cardiodrumming consisted of participants self-selecting ‘drum sticks’ (pool noodles) and station (fixed yoga ball), following trained group exercise leaders through moderate intensity exercise (as measured by heart rate). Sessions consisted of a five-minute warm up, two fifteen-minute active periods broken up by a five-minute active rest, and a five-minute cool down. Pre- and post-data were analyzed using one-way repeated measures ANOVAs for each functional test. RESULTS: There were no improvements in TUG performance (F(1,9)=4.39, p =0.66, np2 = .328), mBERG (F(1,9)= 0.498, p = .498, np2 = .052 or EPESE performance (F(1,9)=1.210, p =0.30, np2 = .119). CONCLUSIONS: There appears to be no measurable benefit from Cardiodrumming in people with DS in regard to function. This finding may have been influenced by participants engaging at a self-selected intensity, most adopting easier movements or not pushing themselves as directed by the group exercise instructor. Future researchers should emphasize that more attention should be paid to the instructor rather than watching their peers. Overall, participants with DS enjoyed Cardiodrumming, but more incentive to push themselves would be needed to elicit functional adaptations.

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