Degree Type

Honors Capstone Project

Date of Submission

Spring 4-1-2009

Capstone Advisor

Scott Collier

Honors Reader

Randall Jorgenson

Capstone Major

Exercise Science

Capstone College

Sport and Human Dynamics

Audio/Visual Component


Capstone Prize Winner


Won Capstone Funding


Honors Categories

Sciences and Engineering

Subject Categories

Exercise Science


Individuals with Down Syndrome (DS) can benefit immensely from the physical as well as social and psychological aspects of sport and exercise. However, because their physical and mental capacities stray from the norm it can often be hard to find suitable activities for them, accessible venues and knowledgeable instructors. This paper outlines the physiological differences associated with DS in regards to the musculoskeletal system, cardiovascular system, and the immune system, in addition to addressing the higher incidence of certain health conditions, such as diabetes, osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s disease, and the relationship exercise has with these conditions.

The reasons for low levels of physical activity are assessed and recommendations are made for how to increase these levels and find suitable activities for this population. Behavioral and cognitive differences are touched upon and recommendations are also made on helpful instructional techniques. The purpose of this paper is to better inform people about the physiological and psychological differences associated with DS, the precautions that must be taken when those with DS participate in physical activity, recommendations for appropriate forms of exercise and techniques that may be helpful in working with this population.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



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