Purpose: The 2-min walk test may be more appropriate functional exercise test for young children. This study aimed to examine the 2-min walk test’s reliability; validity; and minimal clinically important difference; and to establish norms for children aged 6–12. Methods: Sixty-one healthy children were recruited to examine the 2-min walk test’s reliability. Forty-six children with neuromuscular disorders (63% cerebral palsy) were recruited to test the validity. The normative study involved 716 healthy children without neuromuscular disorders (male = 51%, female = 49%). They walked at a self-selected speed for 2 min along a smooth, flat path 15 m in length. Results: The mean distance covered in the 2-min walk test was 152.8 m (SD =27.5). No significant difference was found in the children’s test-retest results (p > 0.05). The intra- and inter-rater reliability were high (all intra-class correlation coefficients >0.8). All children, except one with neuromuscular disorders, completed the 2-min walk test, of which the minimal clinically important difference at 95% confidence interval was 23.2 m for the entire group, 15.7 m for children walking with aids, and 16.6 m for those walking independently. Conclusions: The 2-min walk test is a feasible, reliable, and valid exercise test for children with and without neuromuscular disorders aged 6–12. The first normative references and minimal clinically important difference for children with neuromuscular disorders were established for children of this age group.Implications for rehabilitation The 2-min walk test is a feasible, safe, reliable, and valid time-based walk test for children aged 6–12 years. Normative references have been established for healthy children aged 6–12 years. Minimal clinically important difference at 95% confidence interval were calculated for children with neuromuscular disorders who walked without aids (i.e., independent and stand-by supervision) and those who walked with aids equal to 16.6 and 15.7 m, respectively. Distance covered by the healthy children in the 2 min did not correlate with age, gender, height, and weight of the children.
- Exercise test
- outcome assessment (healthcare)
- reproducibility of results
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