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Papers of the Week

Papers: 5 Nov 2022 - 11 Nov 2022

Human Studies

2022 Nov 08

Assist Technol

Biomechanical comparison of walking with a new, wearable rehabilitation training device to Nordic walking and regular walking in people with chronic low back pain.


Physical activity, particularly walking, is commonly used for the treatment of diseases such as low back pain. In this study, the effects of walking wearing the new ToneFit Reha training belt (TFR) were compared to both Nordic walking and regular walking. The TFR is intended to intensify the effects of walking through the integration of two adjustable resistance handles.Ten patients with low back pain performed regular walking, Nordic walking and walking with the TFR in a movement laboratory. The kinematics of the trunk, upper extremities and lower extremities were measured, and the activity of the trunk and upper extremity muscles recorded. Data were analysed by repeated-measures ANOVA and paired t-test.Kinematics indicated that walking with the TFR introduces instability that was mitigated by a delayed peak trunk rotation (peak at 63.3% gait cycle, vs. 52.8% in walking (p=0.001) and 51.0% in NW (p=0.007)). Upper extremity kinematics (constrained elbow flexion, high peak shoulder abduction) showed movement patterns that need to be considered when training over a longer period. Increased muscle activity was observed especially for upper extremity muscles, when training with TFR. Overall, walking with the TFR was found to be a suitable therapy for use in a rehabilitation setting.