Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Author's Department

Physical Education

First Advisor

M. Thomas Woodall


The intent of the study was to establish a ten week cardiovascular exercise program for a paraplegic amputee and evaluate the effects through a selected battery of physiological tests and measurements. Included were body weight, skinfold thickness, reaction time, grip strength, static and dynamic lung volumes, heart rate, blood pressure, resting VO2 and maximum VO2. A careful training record was kept and the subject also made observations concerning his feelings about the training.

The subject, D.L.W. was a 37 year old male faculty member at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois. He was given a complete physical examination and a stress test before the training program was initiated. Prior to the study, D.L.W. weighed 60 kilograms, was hypertensive and was very motivated to improve his fitness level.

The three day per week training program consisted of arm cranking using a modified bicycle ergometer. The subject was gradually conditioned until he could crank continuously for 15 minutes and a total of 30 minutes of interval work time. During nice weather, the subject would wheel himself in his wheelchair on a predesignated sidewalk course outdoors. Formal training periods were held from February 28, 1980 to April 25, 1980. The tests were given prior to the start of the program, and every two weeks during the training program. All tests were administered in the Human Performance Laboratory at Eastern Illinois University.

The cardiovascular exercise program as performed in this study was helpful in reducing selected anthropometric measurements and systolic blood pressure. The cardiovascular fitness level improved as evidenced by the increased ability to do aerobic work for extended periods of time.

While it was difficult to assess psychological influences as a result of the physiological changes, the subject did appear to get increased enjoyment through rising early and being involved in the exercise program. Motivation levels were extremely high throughout the investigation. This high motivation seemed to hinder the subjects ability to work at maximal levels during certain testing periods.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.