Parallel walk test: Its correlation with balance and motor functions in people with chronic stroke

Sheung Mei Shamay Ng, Lynn H. Chan, Cindy S. Chan, Stephanie H. Lai, Winnie W. Wu, Mun Yee Mimi Tse, Shirley S. Fong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Abstract Objectives To investigate (1) the intrarater, interrater, and test-retest reliability of the times and scores generated in the parallel walk test (PWT); (2) their correlations with impairments and activity limitations of individuals with stroke; and (3) the cutoff times that best discriminate individuals with stroke from healthy elderly subjects. Design Cross sectional study. Setting University-based rehabilitation center. Participants Participants (N=72) comprised individuals with stroke (n=37) and healthy individuals (n=35). Interventions Not applicable. Main Outcome Measures The PWT was administered along with the Fugl-Meyer Motor Assessment of the Lower Extremities (FMA-LE), handheld dynamometer measurements of ankle dorsiflexor and plantarflexor muscle strength, the 5-Times-Sit-to-Stand Test, the Berg Balance Scale (BBS), a limits of stability (LOS) test, the 10-m walk test (10-MWT), and the timed Up and Go (TUG) test. Results PWT times and scores showed good to excellent intrarater, interrater, and test-retest reliability in individuals with stroke. PWT times using paths of 3 different widths significantly correlated with FMA-LE scores, 5-Times-Sit-to-Stand Test times, BBS scores, some LOS test results, 10-MWT gait speed, and TUG test times. PWT times of 6.30 to 7.48 seconds, depending on the path width, were shown reliably to discriminate individuals with stroke from healthy individuals. Conclusion The PWT is a reliable, easy-to-administer clinical tool for assessing dynamic walking balance in individuals with chronic stroke.
Original languageEnglish
Article number56032
Pages (from-to)877-884
Number of pages8
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2015


  • Postural balance
  • Rehabilitation
  • Stroke
  • Walking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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