Effects of pacing vs. non-pacing on a one-mile walk test in adults with mental retardation
Kunde, Karen A.
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The purpose of this study was to compare heart rates and completion times of adults with MR after performing a one-mile walk test with and without a pacer. Fifteen participants with mild or moderate mental retardation (x? age=38.8 yrs. ±10.2) performed a series of walk tests in an indoor gymnasium. The participants performed the test a minimum of two times with a pacer and two times without a pacer. Intraclass reliability coefficients (R) for walk time with a pacer, walk time without a pacer, heart rate with a pacer, and heart rate without a pacer were .99, .99, .91, and .95, respectively. There was no significant difference found between repeated measures of walk times or heart rates with and without a pacer (p>.05). Results indicated, however, that the average walk times for the pacer and no pacer conditions were significantly different [t(14)=3.11, p<.01]. The pacer condition resulted in a faster average walk time by approximately one minute. Therefore, it is recommended that when having adults with MR perform a walk test, a pacer should be used to assure maximum performance.