Assessing walking adaptability in stroke patients

Disabil Rehabil. 2021 Nov;43(22):3242-3250. doi: 10.1080/09638288.2020.1731852. Epub 2020 Mar 18.


The ability to adapt walking is important for safe ambulation. Assessments of impairments in walking adaptability with the Interactive Walkway may aid in the development of individualized therapy strategies of stroke patients. The Interactive Walkway is an overground walkway with Kinect v2 sensors for a markerless registration of full-body kinematics, which can be augmented with (gait-dependent) visual context to assess walking adaptability. This study aims to evaluate the potential of the Interactive Walkway as a new technology for assessing walking adaptability in stroke patients. Materials and methods: 30 stroke patients and 30 controls performed clinical tests, quantitative gait assessments and various walking-adaptability tasks on the Interactive Walkway. Outcome measures were compared between stroke patients and controls to examine known-groups validity. Pearson's correlation coefficients were calculated to assess the relationship between walking-adaptability outcomes and commonly used clinical test scores of walking ability and spatiotemporal gait parameters of unconstrained walking. Results: Good known-groups validity for walking-adaptability outcomes was demonstrated. In addition, the vast majority of walking-adaptability outcomes did not or only moderately correlate with clinical test scores of walking ability and unconstrained walking parameters. Conclusion: Interactive Walkway walking-adaptability outcomes have good known-groups validity and complement standard clinical tests and spatiotemporal gait parameters.IMPLICATIONS FOR REHABILITATIONThe Interactive Walkway allows for a comprehensive walking-adaptability assessment.Good known-groups validity for walking-adaptability tasks was demonstrated and walking-adaptability tasks complemented clinical tests and gait parameters.The Interactive Walkway has potential for monitoring recovery of walking after stroke.Assessments of walking adaptability may contribute to individualized interventions.

Keywords: Stroke; assessment; gait; known-groups validity; walking ability; walking adaptability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Gait
  • Humans
  • Stroke Rehabilitation*
  • Stroke*
  • Walking