Anaerobic power output and propulsion technique in spinal cord injured subjects during wheelchair ergometry

A J Dallmeijer, Y J Kappe, D H Veeger, T W Janssen, L H van der Woude

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In order to investigate the influence of the level of the spinal cord injury (SCI) on anaerobic or short-term power production and propulsion technique, 23 male SCI subjects performed a 30-second sprint test on a stationary wheelchair ergometer. Kinematic parameters were studied both inter- and intra-individually. Subjects with a cervical lesion showed a lower mean power output (21.5 Watt, one-sided) than the other subjects; whereas, no differences were found between subjects with a thoracic or lumbar injury (46.9, 63.7, and 49.1 Watt, one-sided). Unexpectedly, no differences were found for the effectiveness of the force applied on the rim between subjects with a cervical injury and the other subjects. It is suggested that the high hand rim velocity reached by subjects with a lower injury cause coordination problems. Reduced arm functionality of subjects with a cervical lesion appeared to cause a higher inward directed force. Arm functionality and rim velocity may have a compensating effect with respect to the effectiveness of force. The kinematics of subjects with a cervical lesion differed strongly from subjects with a lower lesion. Propulsion technique appeared to be intra-individually consistent, which is reflected in the consistency of the force curves, the power output curves, and the movement patterns. Large inter-individual differences in propulsion technique were found. It is concluded that the large diversity in capacity of the SCI population should be taken into account with respect to guidelines and requirements for the environmental space of the SCI population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-8
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Rehabilitation Research and Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1994


  • Adult
  • Anaerobic Threshold
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Exercise Test
  • Humans
  • Joints
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oxygen
  • Quadriplegia
  • Signal Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Wheelchairs
  • Journal Article


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