Training balance recovery in people with incomplete SCI wearing a wearable exoskeleton

E.H.F. van Asseldonk*, A. Emmens, T.J.H. Brug, I. Pisotta, M. Arquilla, F. Tamburella, M. Masciullo, N. L. Tagliamonte, R. Valette, M. Molinari, H. van der Kooij

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)
    168 Downloads (Pure)


    Improving stability of people wearing a lower extremity Wearable Exoskeleton (WE) is one of the biggest challenges in the field. The goal of this preliminary study was to improve balance recovery from perturbations in people with incomplete Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) assisted by a WE with specifically developed balance controller. The WE has actuated ankle and knee joints, which were controlled by using a body sway-based balance controller. Two test pilots participated in 5 training sessions, devoted to enhance the use of the robot, and in pre/post assessments. Their balance during quiet standing was perturbed through pushes in forward direction. The controller was effective in supporting balance recovery in both tests pilots as reflected by a smaller sway amplitude and recovery time when compared with a minimal impedance controller. Moreover, the training resulted in a further reduction of the sway amplitude and recovery time in one of the test pilots whereas it had not an additional beneficial effect for the other subject. In conclusion, the novel balance controller can effectively assist people with incomplete SCI in maintaining standing balance and a dedicated training has the potential to further improve balance.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationWearable Robotics: Challenges and Trends
    Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Wearable Robotics, WeRob2018, October 16-20, 2018, Pisa, Italy
    EditorsMaria Chiara Carrozza, Silvestro Micera, José L. Pons
    Place of PublicationCham
    Number of pages5
    ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-01887-0
    ISBN (Print)978-3-030-01886-3
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019
    Event4th International Symposium on Wearable Robotics, WeRob 2018 - Pisa, Italy
    Duration: 16 Oct 201820 Oct 2018
    Conference number: 4

    Publication series

    NameBiosystems and Biorobotics
    ISSN (Print)2195-3562
    ISSN (Electronic)2195-3570


    Conference4th International Symposium on Wearable Robotics, WeRob 2018
    Abbreviated titleWeRob
    Internet address


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