Children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy may find that their ability to keep an upright position or walk is difficult because their disability affects one side of their body. The body’s core muscles, surrounding the trunk and pelvis, are essential to supporting the body in its daily functions—such as maintaining balance and walking.
According to a new study, core stability exercises to improve trunk endurance may help hemiplegic cerebral palsy patients be able to walk. The study, from Cairo University in Egypt, analyzed 30 children with hemiplegic cerebral palsy that were randomly split into two groups. Both groups underwent a physical therapy program, however one group received additional core stability training. After 8 weeks of therapy, the group that received the extra core training showed significant improvement in trunk endurance and walking ability compared to the group that received predefined physical therapy alone. Additionally, the study found lateral trunk muscle endurance was significantly improved in the children who had the core stability training—suggesting that trunk muscles are only worked in a limited capacity in predefined physical therapy.