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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213


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).

Study summary:

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).


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%)



Primary Contact:

Principal Investigator
Jessie VanSwearingen, PhD, PT
University of Pittsburgh

Backup Contact:


Location Contact:

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213
United States

There is no listed contact information for this specific location.

Site Status: N/A

Data Source: ClinicalTrials.gov

Date Processed: October 09, 2019

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