Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital
Project Title: Exploring motor adaptation in response to perturbations generated by a lower-limb exoskeleton
Project Summary: The ability of humans to modify their motor plan in response to changes in their walking environment is a phenomenon referred to as locomotor adaptation. Studying the processes underlying the generation of motor adaptation in response to mechanical perturbations is key to understanding the organization of human locomotor circuits.
This work consists of exploring motor adaptation in response to perturbations generated by a lower-limb exoskeleton. It focuses on implementing strategies to control the exoskeleton and on using it to generate torques affecting joint angular dispalcements at the hip, knee, and ankle, hence resulting in changes in the lower-limb movement trajectory. The system will be used to develop experimental protocols aimed to study motor adaptations during walking. Experimental data will then be collected and analyzed to study the response of healthy subjects to various perturbations of the lower limb.