Table 1

Participant characteristics at baseline

CharacteristicSham training (n=32)Active training (n=30)
Age (years)*55.7±14.951.5±14.3
Sex (male : female)28:430:0
Body mass index (kg/m2)*25.6±6.324.5±5.0
Single neurological level of spinal cord injury, no of participants
American Spinal Injury Association Impairment Scale, no of participants
 A (motor complete)1616
 B (motor complete)45
 C (motor incomplete)129
No of participants
 Acute (<6 months)1515
 Chronic (>1 year)1715
Time since injury
 Acute (<6 months) in days92.5±43.483.8±47.7
 Chronic (>1 year) in years23.1±15.625.4±13.0
Lung function measures*
 Maximal inspiratory pressure (cmH2O)51.5±19.748.4±22.6
 Maximal expiratory pressure (cmH2O)33.2±14.032.8±18.2
 Vital capacity (L)2.7±0.92.4±0.9
 Inspiratory capacity (L)2.1±0.720.±0.7
 Peak expiratory cough flow (L/s)4.7±1.64.6±1.5
 FEV1 (L/s)1.8±0.71.9±0.8
 FVC (L/s)2.4±1.02.5±1.0
 Total lung capacity (L)4.9±1.25.0±1.2
Quality of life: SF-36ww† score/100
 Physical functioning30 (0–70)30 (15–75)
 Role limitations (physical health)25 (0–100)50 (0–100)
 Role limitations (emotional problems)100 (17–100)100 (67–100)
 Energy/fatigue55 (30–73)50 (35–70)
 Emotional well-being76 (58–92)80 (60–84)
 Social functioning50 (13–75)75 (50–88)
 Pain68 (40–80)48 (38–68)
 General health60 (25–73)45 (25–70)
Quality of life: EQ-5D VAS55 (40–74)60 (48–71)
Perceived breathlessness (Borg)*(score/10)
 At rest0.8±1.00.8±1.1
 During 10 inspiratory loaded breaths at 15 cmH2O3.4±2.02.9±2.1
 During 10 expiratory loaded breaths at 15 cmH2O4.3±2.43.4±1.7
St George Respiratory Questionnaire† 
 Symptoms score21.6 (0.0–36.2)24.7 (11.1–37.5)
 Activity score0.0 (0.0–20.3)6.8 (0.0–28.4)
 Impacts score12.4 (5.2–25.1)12.2 (1.2–27.0)
 Total score13.5 (6.0–20.3)11.0 (3.9–29.5)
  • *Mean±SD.

  • †Median (IQR).

  • EQ-5D VAS, EuroQol-Five Dimensional Visual Analogue Scale; SF-36ww, Short Form Health Survey: walk/wheel.