Six minute walk test

The 6-minute walk test (6MWT) is a simple, self-paced test that measures the distance a patient can walk quickly on a flat, hard surface within a period of 6 minutes.  It is designed to assess the progression of a respiratory or cardiac disease (improvement or worsening of the patient's condition).

Patient Preparation:

  1. Comfortable clothing should be worn.
  2. Appropriate shoes for walking should be worn.
  3. Patients should use their usual walking aids during the test, such as a cain, walker, etc.
  4. The patient's usual medical regimen should be continued.
  5. A light meal is acceptable before early morning or early afternoon tests.
  6. Patients should not have exercised vigorously within 2 hours of beginning the test.