Academics, practitioners and people with a spinal cord injury (SCI) are meeting at the NCSEM-EM today to start the process of implementing and disseminating the scientific exercise guidelines for people with spinal cord injury into accessible formats for use across the globe.
The scientific guidelines have been developed over 18 months through a rigorous review process of the existing research in the area followed by academics, practitioners and people with SCI coming together at three international panel meetings to reach a consensus on the amount and type of exercise recommended for this population group.
The scientific guidelines were launched at the International Spinal Cord Society (ISCoC) Annual Scientific Meeting this week.
The next stage involves engaging further with people with SCI and other key stakeholder groups including physiotherapists, physicians, recreational therapists and fitness trainers to determine how to best present the guidelines to these groups and what resources are the most appropriate in helping them interpret and follow the guidelines.
The aim of this meeting is to bring together representatives from the UK and other countries to discuss and share plans around how the guidelines may be disseminated and implemented both nationally and internationally. The meeting is being hosted by Loughborough University’s Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport along with collaborators the University of British Columbia, with representatives attending from the UK, Canada, Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands.
Dr Jan van der Scheer, lead research associate on the project, said: “The scientific guidelines can only be of real value for use in practice when these are translated into accessible, understandable guidelines for people living with SCI and healthcare professionals.”
Find out more
The research has been published this week in the journal Spinal Cord.
The paper resulting from the systematic review process ‘Effects of Exercise on Fitness and Health of Adults with Spinal Cord Injury: A Systematic Review’ was recently accepted by the leading clinical neurology journal Neurology.
Dr van der Scheer also recently presented a webinar looking at the overarching process of knowledge translation and guideline development in the context of spinal cord injury, expanding on the systematic review and consensus panels that took place as part of the process. Watch the webinar here.
Follow the launch of the guidelines on Twitter using #SCILaunch