Alternative field exercise tests for people with respiratory conditions

A. L. Lee, S. L. Harrison, M. K. Beauchamp, T. Janaudis-Ferreira, D. Brooks

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearch

7 Citations (Scopus)


Assessment of exercise capacity and physical function is critical in individuals with respiratory conditions. While field walking tests are well-established measures of exercise capacity, alternative options involving walking of a shorter duration, stair or step climbing, and functional activities are also available. This review outlines these alternative tests and their relevant measurement properties, including comparisons with established field walking tests and their clinical applications. The 4-m gait speed and 30-m walking test are walking tests of shorter duration than traditional tests and may be a surrogate marker for exercise capacity. Stair climbing tests require greater body movement against gravity, often imposing a greater workload compared to field walking tests. Functional tests such as sit-to-stand tests provide information related to strength and general functioning. The current measurement properties established, together with the emerging evidence for responsiveness to interventions suggest potential for broader clinical use of these alternative field tests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-241
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Reports
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Activities of daily living
  • Gait tests
  • Respiratory disease
  • Sit-to-stand tests
  • Stair tests
  • Step tests

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