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Restoring Skill in Walking

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT00177359
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : September 15, 2005
Last Update Posted : December 13, 2007
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Information provided by:
University of Pittsburgh

Brief Summary:
The purpose of the study is to examine the effect of an intervention to improve walking based on motor learning (skill-based) compared to the usual intervention (strength, flexibility and balance-based) on clinical, psychological and laboratory measures of walking and balance of older adults with mobility disability (walking problems).

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Mobility Limitation Behavioral: gait intervention Phase 2

Detailed Description:

While therapeutic exercise to improve mobility and balance appears to improve physical performance and may reduce falls, less is known about the responsiveness to specific interventions or the relation between response to intervention and the underlying problems or impairments. Therapeutic approaches for improving mobility and reducing fall risk are heterogeneous, but do not consistently focus on problem solving as a method of enhancing motor control or skill, an approach that has been found to be important for motor learning in animal models.

This two-year pilot study will allows us to compare the clinical, psychological and laboratory outcomes after a motor-learning based and an impairment-targeted exercise intervention to improve walking in older adults. All subjects will participate in pre and post intervention testing and a 12 week exercise intervention for gait involving either a motor learning (skill enhancement) or impairment-targeted (lower extremity strengthening, flexibility and gait cues).

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 48 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Restoring Skill in Walking
Study Start Date : November 2005
Actual Study Completion Date : June 2007

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in gait variability, energy cost of walking, perception of effort in walking, and adaptability of gait to changing environmental conditions, pre and post intervention (12 weeks)

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Physical activity, endurance in walking, falls efficacy, performance of usual activities of living, pre and post intervention (12 weeks)

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   65 Years and older   (Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 65 years of age and older
  • Ambulatory (with or without a straight cane, and without the assistance of another person)
  • Have written approval/clearance of their physician to participate in low to moderate intensity, supervised exercise as is characteristic of the interventions for improving gait.
  • Difficulty with walking or balance as indicated by the following two criteria during baseline testing:

    • mild to moderate slowing of walking speed (walking speed ≥ .6m/s and ≤ 1.0m/s) and,
    • gait variability (step length coefficient of variability, CV > 4.5%, or step width CV < 7% or > 30%)

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT00177359

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United States, Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States, 15213
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Pittsburgh
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
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Principal Investigator: Jessie VanSwearingen, PhD, PT University of Pittsburgh
Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
Layout table for additonal information Identifier: NCT00177359    
Other Study ID Numbers: 0508137
First Posted: September 15, 2005    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: December 13, 2007
Last Verified: December 2007
Keywords provided by University of Pittsburgh:
gait impairment
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Mobility Limitation
Signs and Symptoms