Balance and gait training with augmented feedback improves balance confidence in people with parkinson's disease: A randomized controlled trial

Xia Shen, Kit Yi Mak

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Fear of falling has been identified as an important and independent fall-risk predictor in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, there are inconsistent findings on the effects of balance and gait training on balance confidence. Objective. To explore whether balance and gait training with augmented feedback can enhance balance confidence in PD patients immediately after treatment and at 3- and 12-month follow-ups. Methods. A total of 51 PD patients were randomly assigned to a balance and gait training (BAL) group or to an active control (CON) group. The BAL group received balance and gait training with augmented feedback, whereas CON participants received lower-limb strength training for 12 weeks. Outcome measures included Activities-Specific Balance Confidence (ABC) Scale, limits-of-stability test, single-leg-stance test, and spatiotemporal gait characteristics. All tests were administered before intervention (Pre), immediately after training (Post), and at 3 months (Post3m) and 12 months (Post12m) after treatment completion. Results. The ABC score improved marginally at Post and significantly at Post3m and Post12monly in the BAL group (P < .017). Both participant groups increased their end point excursion at Post, but only the BAL group maintained the improvement at Post3m. The BAL group maintained significantly longer time-to-loss-of-balance during the single-leg stance test than the CON group at Post3mand Post12m(P < .05). For gait characteristics, both participant groups increased gait velocity, but only the BAL group increased stride length at Post, Post3m, and Post12m(P < .017). Conclusions. Positive findings from this study provide evidence that BAL with augmented feedback could enhance balance confidence and balance and gait performance in patients with PD.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)524-535
Number of pages12
JournalNeurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Balance confidence
  • Feedback
  • Gait
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Postural balance
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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