Dual-task training for improving balance in people with cerebellar ataxia: A randomized controlled trial

Anne YY Chan, Whitney SL, Chen Cynthia

Research output: Journal article publicationConference articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Purpose: Evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of dual-task training compared with single-task (conventional balance: active control) training in individuals with cerebellar ataxia.
Methods: An assessor and statistician blinded two-arm parallel-group, RCT comparing dual-task (group 1) to single-task (conventional balance, coordination and cognitive – group 2) training is being conducted with 44 participants with CA. Study inclusion criteria include (1) men and women in the age group of 18–60 years; (2) with a confirmed diagnosis of CA (of any type); (3) able to walk independently with or without walking assistive aids. Group 1 will undergo supervised, 60 min of dual-task training twice weekly for 4 weeks followed by 6 months of unsupervised exercises. Group 2 will undergo single-task training for the same intensity. We will assess balance using dual-task timed up and go test, Berg Balance Scale, limits of stability, ataxia severity using the scale for the assessment and rating of ataxia and quality of life using the EuroQol 5D5L.
Results: To date, we have recruited 12 participants in group 1 and 12 in group 2. The 4 weeks intervention is underway and the results of this experiment will be presented during the conference.
Conclusion(s): The conclusion will be derived based on the study findings.
Impact: Findings of this cutting-edge research are important to the clinicians, researchers, policy-makers and people with cerebellar ataxia. This study finding will have important clinical implications by clarifying if adding a cognitive demand to routine balance and coordination training will result in additional benefits on improving balance and reducing falls in comparison with usual care in people with cerebellar ataxia. The findings will also have important implications for increasing the efficacy of falls prevention programs in other populations with neurological deficits who are at risk for falls.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberP086
Number of pages1
JournalPhysiotherapy (United Kingdom)
Issue numberSupplement 1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

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