Comparison between12-minute walk test and3-minute step test in normal adults

Author: 
Verma. Chhaya, VijayaKrishnan and KamatPooja

Background: Cardiorespiratory endurance is a fundamental component of physical fitness. Compared with maximal exercise testing, sub-maximal testing has greater applicability to physical therapists. Field tests that evaluate the physical capacity are widely used in practice due to their ease of implementation, low cost & representativeness of daily activities. The purpose of this study was to compare 2 practical measures of functional endurance – 12 minute walk test (12MWT) & 3 minute step test (3MST) to determine their appropriateness for use as field tests in adults.
Methodology: 150 individuals between 18 to 25 yrs were divided into Group A performing 12 MWT & Group B performing 3MST randomly. After informed consent & departmental ethics approval this study was conducted. We documented the changes in blood pressure, heart rate responses and subjective exertion associated with the tests immediately post test, 1 minute after, 3 minute after so on till basal level was obtained.
Results: Both the tests produced significant changes in all outcomes. The average heart rate & perceived exertion were significantly higher after 3 MST than 12 MWT. The average heart rate in 3 MST was equal to 76.11% of the age related target heart rate.
Conclusion: The 12 MWT is less stressful physiologically & therefore 3 MST may be a better option for field-testing functional endurance in adults

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