Trips and slips increase fall risk while walking. To assess balance recovery, treadmill and/or overground methods are used to simulate perturbations.
Trips and slips are the two leading external causes of falling while walking in fall prone demographics. To assess balance recovery responses, researchers typically use overground and/or treadmill methods to simulate these real-world perturbations. However, it remained unclear as to whether, and to what extent, the neuromechanical recovery mechanisms differed between overground and treadmill perturbations. Differences between treadmill and over-ground perturbations may affect characteristics of reactive stepping and balance responses.
Potential differences are crucial to consider for understanding the etiology of falls and the recovery responses targeted by interventions. Thus, this systematic review assessed the current literature on the reactive recovery responses between over-ground- and split-belt treadmill trips and slips as well as the effect of aging on these responses. This investigation was lead by Tarique Siragy within the Center for Digital Health and Social Innovation in collaboration with Yuri Russo, Will Young, and Sallie E. Lamb at the University of Exeter. This research was partially funded by the Gesellschaft für Forschung Förderung.