Robotic Gait Trainer in Water: Development of an Underwater Gait-Training OrthosisBy Miyoshi, Tasuku; Hiramatsu, Kazuaki; Yamamoto, Shin-Ichiro; Nakazawa, Kimitaka; Aikai, Masami; Disability and Rehabilitation, Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 81-87
Publication Date: 2008
Research paper describes the development of a robotic gait trainer that can be used in water (RGTW) and achieve repetitive physiological patterns to improve movement dysfunctions. The RGTW is a hip-knee-ankle-foot orthosis with pneumatic actuators whose assist torque can be adjusted; the control software was developed on the basis of the angular motions of the hip and knee joints of a healthy participant as he walked in water. Nine healthy participants aged 22-24 years were used to investigate the lower-limb joint angular displacements, foot trajectories, and electromyographic (EMG) activities while walking on a treadmill in water with the RGTW. Results showed that both the foot trajectories and the joint angular displacement patterns of the hip and knee joint were preserved with the RGTW, and the assist torques reduced the enhanced EMG activities of the hip extension muscle group. The study concludes that the RGTW may be used in partial body-weight support training and for hydrotherapy, and may be particularly valuable in therapy for hip joint movement dysfunctions.
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Limited (Website:http://taylorandfrancis.org)
International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (Web Site: http://www.isprm.org )
Link to text: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09638280701191826