GRFS, Kids-Therapy

Galileo Research Facts No. 165: Can Galileo Therapy improve voluntary muscle activation in children with CP?

Galileo Research Facts No. 165: Can Galileo Therapy improve voluntary muscle activation in children with CP?

This extremely interesting study was carried out in cooperation with the working groups of Prof. Gollhofer (Sports Institute Freiburg) and Prof. Schönau from the Children’s Clinic Cologne (Cologne Concept: On your feet) and investigated the immediate effects of Galileo Therapy in children (GMFCS 2-4, 4-12 years) with cerebral palsy (CP) with regard to reflexes and voluntary muscle activation (voluntary access to muscle functions). Only a very rudimentary Galileo exercise was used (16-25Hz, position 1.5-3, 1 min, standing almost upright on the forefoot, 10° knee angle, two-legged). Various parameters of muscle function were measured (see also #GRFS166), such as mechanical reflex response (sensitivity to mechanical stimuli), active range of motion and voluntary muscle activation.

The results after only one minute of Galileo application where remarkable: Reduction of the reflex response (-12%) with simultaneous increase of voluntary muscle activation (+17% and +37%) – two well-known effects (also well established in sports science): A lack of voluntary muscle activation will cause an increased muscle tone (in extreme cases resulting in spasticity) and therefore increase cocontraction for a specific movement – this, on the one sides is a simple and effective way to stabilize joints but has the disadvantage that it automatically limits functional outcomes: The higher the cocontraction to stabilize joints the more the functional muscle (e.g. in walking working against gravity) also has to work against the corresponding Antagonist. The higher this proportion the more decrease in functional outcome. In addition, cocontraction will limit the range of motion which can be seen in the results of this study: the decrease of cocontraction and increase of voluntary muscle activation also increased the active range of motion (aROM) by 15%.

This study gives therefore important background for the short-term effects of Galileo and explains why Galileo Therapy can open up a therapeutic window which should be used for more specific Galileo exercises or also for other therapy types.

#GRFS165 #GalileoResearchFacts #GalileoTherapy #MechanoStimulation #VoluntrayMuscleActivation #MuscleActivation #MuslceFunction #CP #CerebalPalsy #CologneConcept