Robotics for Improving Mobility for Parki... - Cure Parkinson's

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Robotics for Improving Mobility for Parkinson's Patients


I'm a 38 yo diagnosed with Parkinsons a few months ago. The meds and physical therapy really help but I still have tremendous difficulty walking beyond a short distance. My gait is all messed up and my right leg tends to drag unless I consciously pick it up. I was thinking about how robotics could help me and I did a quick search online which resulted in a myriad of hits. A few of them below:

Anybody have any experience using robotics to improve your mobility?

3 Replies


The problems that you mention tend to respond quite well to levodopa based therapies. You may wish to discuss with your doctor an increase of dose.

I find the following techniques useful for dragging feet:

- make sure your shoes are done up tightly, so that there is no play in the shoe, even a few millimetres can make the difference between normal and dragging;

- if you have arm swing in one arm but not the other, put your good arm into a pocket; sometimes this leads to your bad arm starting to swing, this acts like a pendulum to lift your foot.

To answer your question, if you're suffering from poor posture (lean and stoop) you may be interested in trying an app that I wrote. It requires an Android smart phone placed on top of your head and secured by a tight fitting ski hat. It measures your stoop and lean and warns you when these exceed pre-set limits. It is available for free from:


park_bear in reply to johntPM

Consciously causing the arm on the affected side to swing is also important. When that arm swings back, it helps to move the leg on that side forward.

I would try Naboso shoe inserts...the Neuro ones to start, before robotics. Apparently quality shoes matter when using the inserts.

However, I do believe PD is meant to move us towards mindfulness, I think about each step as I lift my left foot. I don't consider it a burden, as mindful walking is good for the body, mind and soul. It drums up a lot of gratitude for what we do have. Also, using Nordic walking poles or smovy rings really facilitates arm swing. Are you taking Vit D3? It may help with balance, especially for YOPD. Dr. Mischley recommends Bio-D-Mulsion Forte (5 drops every night), I take Vit K1/2 with it (take with some fat). There are lots of things to help with PD, but effort put forth by you is the biggest answer (diet, exercise, mindful movement, stress reduction, etc). It does suck, you surely are not alone. This disease makes you face yourself....I do believe it is the whole point of it. Take heart, there are lots of new discoveries ahead....whether scientific or within yourself. There is a training that may help, Parkinsons Regeneration Training...look it up and watch some of the videos. He does some vestibular training that does help with gait, as well as using the shoe inserts. I am going to the training in Chicago in April.

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