Purpose: To examine the feasibility and efficacy of a combined motor-cognitive training using virtual reality to enhance behavior, cognitive function and dual-tasking in children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Methods: Fourteen non-medicated school-aged children with ADHD, received 18 training sessions during 6 weeks. Training included walking on a treadmill while negotiating virtual obstacles. Behavioral symptoms, cognition and gait were tested before and after the training and at 6-weeks follow-up. Results: Based on parental report, there was a significant improvement in children's social problems and psychosomatic behavior after the training. Executive function and memory were improved post-training while attention was unchanged. Gait regularity significantly increased during dual-task walking. Long-term training effects were maintained in memory and executive function. Conclusion: Treadmill-training augmented with virtual-reality is feasible and may be an effective treatment to enhance behavior, cognitive function and dual-tasking in children with ADHD.
Keywords: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; child; executive function; exercise; virtual reality therapy.