Clinical Scenario: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) can present several challenges to athletic participation due to unpredictable disease activity and uncontrollable systemic symptoms that severely impact daily activities, and limit exercise/sports participation. Limited studies and a lack of standard guidelines for physical activity (PA) and exercise are additional barriers for patients. Limited sources have determined that exercise interventions of low-to-moderate intensity are safe and feasible for IBD patients. In theory, such interventions could promote improvements in exercise capacity and overall well-being. Focused Clinical Question: Is there evidence to suggest that a baseline of established safe exercise-intensities promote improvements in exercise capacity in collegiate athletes with IBD? Clinical Bottom Line: Aerobic exercise, resistance training, and combined exercise promotes improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle function, and body composition changes in the general IBD patient population. The applicability of these interventions specifically for collegiate athletes with IBD is questionable; however, there may be underlying practical implications for Athletic Trainers to use these exercise thresholds for gradually returning athletes to sport specific activities following resolution of disease activity. Strength of Recommendation: According to the Oxford Centre of Evidence- Based Medicine, there is variable evidence (ranging from level 4 to level 2 evidence) that suggests low-to-moderate aerobic and resistance exercise to be feasible and effective in promoting improvements in exercise capacity in IBD patients. Key Words: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), exercise, physical activity, exercise capacity, Ulcerative Colitis (UC), Crohn’s Disease (CD), collegiate athletes, sports participation, sport
Dr. Andrea Cripps - Professor/BGSU
Dr. Jenny Toonstra - Professor/BGSU
Roberts, Emily C., "ESTABLISHING SAFE THRESHOLDS TO IMPROVE EXERCISE CAPACITY IN COLLEGIATE ATHLETES WITH INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE (IBD): A CRITICALLY APPRAISED TOPIC" (2022). Master of Education in Human Movement, Sport, and Leisure Studies Graduate Projects. 94.