A New Standardized Treadmill Walking Test Requiring Low Motor Skills in Children Aged 4–10 Years

Exercise intolerance may be reported by parents of young children with respiratory diseases. There is, however, a lack of standardized exercise protocols which allow verification of these reports especially in younger children.



In a cross sectional study healthy children were separated into three age groups. All children performed the developed treadmill walking test with increasing exercise levels up to peak condition with maximal exhaustion. Gas exchange, heart rate and lactate were measured during the test, spirometry before and after. Parameters calculated at all exercise levels as well as at 2mmol/l and 4mmol/l lactate level for group differences and test-retest differences.


The aims of this pilot study were to develop a standardised treadmill walking test for children aged 4 to 10 years demanding low sensorimotor skills and achieving high physical exhaustion.


exercise physiology, spirometry


The test could be demonstrated to be feasible with a good repeatability and a high exhaustion level. In conclusion this newly designed treadmill walking test indicates a good feasibility, safety, and repeatability.


This new standardized treadmill walking test suggests the potential usefulness of exercise capacity monitoring for children aged from early 4 to 10 years. Various applications and test modifications will be investigated in further studies.