Semin Speech Lang 2011; 32(1): 021-030
DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1271972
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Respiratory Strength Training: Concept and Intervention Outcomes

Christine Sapienza1 , Michelle Troche1 , Teresa Pitts2 , Paul Davenport2
  • 1Department of Speech Language and Hearing Sciences, Brain Rehabilitation Research Center, Malcom Randall VA, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
  • 2Department of Physiological Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
13 April 2011 (online)


Respiratory muscle strength training (RMST) focuses on increasing the force-generating capacity of the inspiratory and expiratory muscles. The choice of respiratory muscles that are targeted using RMST depends on the outcome desired. For example, if an individual has reduced inspiratory muscle strength due to a neurogenic injury and is unable to ventilate the lungs, then inspiratory muscle strength training may be the chosen rehabilitation target. On the other hand, if a professional voice user is complaining of difficulty generating adequate vocal loudness during song production and is suffering from laryngeal dysfunction, then an expiratory muscle strength training paradigm may be the chosen rehabilitation target. Our most recent work with RMST has focused on increasing expiratory muscle force generation for those with Parkinson's disease who have difficulty with breathing, swallowing, and cough production. This difficulty typically worsens as the disease progresses. Highlights of these outcomes are summarized in this article.


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Christine SapienzaPh.D. CCC-SLP 

P.O. Box 117420, Department of Speech Language and Hearing Sciences

University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611