New study seeks to understand how the brain optimizes walking in older adults

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand how people control walking and balance. We are looking for healthy older adults who are interested in joining the study. Participants will walk on a treadmill while using an interactive display that will help them modify their walking pattern. We will determine how these modifications influence oxygen consumption during walking and measures of balance.  

Keywords: balance, walking, energy, stability, falls

Study Sites

1540 E. Alcazar St 90033

 
  • Men & Women
Age icon
55 - 85
 
 
Please call us at 323-442-0229 weekdays between 9 am and 5 pm or send us an email at locomotorcontrol@pt.usc.edu
OR
 

What's involved?

Study length
  • Two hours

Number of visits
  • 2 sessions

Prescription
  • None

Procedures
  • Clinical assessment of walking ability

  • Walk on the treadmill

  • Questionnaires

Compensation
  • Compensation is available for successful completion of each study visit and on campus parking will be provided.

Medical cost coverage
  • None

Why participate?

Your participation will help us understand factors influencing fall risk and effort during walking. The results from the study may also help us design better treatments for people who have had a stroke!

Eligibility

Must have


  • Age range: 55-80 yrs old
  • Able to walk on a treadmill for 45 minutes (this will be done in 5, 15 minute intervals)
  • Able to provide informed consent

Can't have


  • Uncontrolled hypertension
  • History of neurological disorders or head trauma
  • Orthopedic or pain conditions that limit walking ability
  • Asthma that interferes with physical activity

About This Study

We are studying the associations between balance control, energy cost, and walking asymmetry in older adults. This study requires two separate visits to the lab. You will walk on a normal treadmill for several bouts of 5 - 15 minutes in duration for a total of about 45 minutes. Breaks will be included between each block and each visit should take approximately two hours. We will also perform clinical assessments of balance and walking ability. 

The Risks

You may become tired or bored while walking on the treadmill but we will offer frequent rest breaks. There is a risk of physical injury from losses of balance or falls, but we will provide a safety harness so that you will not fall in case you lose your balance while walking on the treadmill.

Study Team

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Principal Investigator
James Finley, PhD
Photohandler
Principal Investigator
Natalia Sanchez Aldana

For questions about this study, contact:

  • Ms. Chang Liu
  • 1540 Alcazar St. CHP, Los Angeles, Ca 90033
  • 3234420229
  • liuchang@usc.edu

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