Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly

S. Galle, W. Derave, F. Bossuyt, P. Calders, P. Malcolm, D. De Clercq

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Elderly are confronted with reduced physical capabilities and increased metabolic energy cost of walking. Exoskeletons that assist walking have the potential to restore walking capacity by reducing the metabolic cost of walking. However, it is unclear if current exoskeletons can reduce energy cost in elderly. Our goal was to study the effect of an exoskeleton that assists plantarflexion during push-off on the metabolic energy cost of walking in physically active and healthy elderly. Seven elderly (age 69.3 ± 3.5 y) walked on treadmill (1.11 m s2) with normal shoes and with the exoskeleton both powered (with assistance) and powered-off (without assistance). After 20 min of habituation on a prior day and 5 min on the test day, subjects were able to walk with the exoskeleton and assistance of the exoskeleton resulted in a reduction in metabolic cost of 12% versus walking with the exoskeleton powered-off. Walking with the exoskeleton was perceived less fatiguing for the muscles compared to normal walking. Assistance resulted in a statistically nonsignificant reduction in metabolic cost of 4% versus walking with normal shoes, likely due to the penalty of wearing the exoskeleton powered-off. Also, exoskeleton mechanical power was relatively low compared to previously identified optimal assistance magnitude in young adults. Future exoskeleton research should focus on further optimizing exoskeleton assistance for specific populations and on considerate integration of exoskeletons in rehabilitation or in daily life. As such, exoskeletons should allow people to walk longer or faster than without assistance and could result in an increase in physical activity and resulting health benefits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-188
Number of pages6
JournalGait and Posture
Volume52
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

Fingerprint

Walking
Costs and Cost Analysis
Shoes
Insurance Benefits
Young Adult
Rehabilitation
Exercise
Muscles
Research
Population

Keywords

  • Elderly
  • Exoskeleton
  • Metabolic cost
  • Plantarflexion assistance
  • Walking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Rehabilitation

Cite this

Galle, S., Derave, W., Bossuyt, F., Calders, P., Malcolm, P., & De Clercq, D. (2017). Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly. Gait and Posture, 52, 183-188. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.11.040

Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly. / Galle, S.; Derave, W.; Bossuyt, F.; Calders, P.; Malcolm, P.; De Clercq, D.

In: Gait and Posture, Vol. 52, 01.02.2017, p. 183-188.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Galle, S, Derave, W, Bossuyt, F, Calders, P, Malcolm, P & De Clercq, D 2017, 'Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly', Gait and Posture, vol. 52, pp. 183-188. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.11.040
Galle, S. ; Derave, W. ; Bossuyt, F. ; Calders, P. ; Malcolm, P. ; De Clercq, D. / Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly. In: Gait and Posture. 2017 ; Vol. 52. pp. 183-188.
@article{421243b9fb5146f99d091fc8610da152,
title = "Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly",
abstract = "Elderly are confronted with reduced physical capabilities and increased metabolic energy cost of walking. Exoskeletons that assist walking have the potential to restore walking capacity by reducing the metabolic cost of walking. However, it is unclear if current exoskeletons can reduce energy cost in elderly. Our goal was to study the effect of an exoskeleton that assists plantarflexion during push-off on the metabolic energy cost of walking in physically active and healthy elderly. Seven elderly (age 69.3 ± 3.5 y) walked on treadmill (1.11 m s2) with normal shoes and with the exoskeleton both powered (with assistance) and powered-off (without assistance). After 20 min of habituation on a prior day and 5 min on the test day, subjects were able to walk with the exoskeleton and assistance of the exoskeleton resulted in a reduction in metabolic cost of 12{\%} versus walking with the exoskeleton powered-off. Walking with the exoskeleton was perceived less fatiguing for the muscles compared to normal walking. Assistance resulted in a statistically nonsignificant reduction in metabolic cost of 4{\%} versus walking with normal shoes, likely due to the penalty of wearing the exoskeleton powered-off. Also, exoskeleton mechanical power was relatively low compared to previously identified optimal assistance magnitude in young adults. Future exoskeleton research should focus on further optimizing exoskeleton assistance for specific populations and on considerate integration of exoskeletons in rehabilitation or in daily life. As such, exoskeletons should allow people to walk longer or faster than without assistance and could result in an increase in physical activity and resulting health benefits.",
keywords = "Elderly, Exoskeleton, Metabolic cost, Plantarflexion assistance, Walking",
author = "S. Galle and W. Derave and F. Bossuyt and P. Calders and P. Malcolm and {De Clercq}, D.",
year = "2017",
month = "2",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.11.040",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "52",
pages = "183--188",
journal = "Gait and Posture",
issn = "0966-6362",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Exoskeleton plantarflexion assistance for elderly

AU - Galle, S.

AU - Derave, W.

AU - Bossuyt, F.

AU - Calders, P.

AU - Malcolm, P.

AU - De Clercq, D.

PY - 2017/2/1

Y1 - 2017/2/1

N2 - Elderly are confronted with reduced physical capabilities and increased metabolic energy cost of walking. Exoskeletons that assist walking have the potential to restore walking capacity by reducing the metabolic cost of walking. However, it is unclear if current exoskeletons can reduce energy cost in elderly. Our goal was to study the effect of an exoskeleton that assists plantarflexion during push-off on the metabolic energy cost of walking in physically active and healthy elderly. Seven elderly (age 69.3 ± 3.5 y) walked on treadmill (1.11 m s2) with normal shoes and with the exoskeleton both powered (with assistance) and powered-off (without assistance). After 20 min of habituation on a prior day and 5 min on the test day, subjects were able to walk with the exoskeleton and assistance of the exoskeleton resulted in a reduction in metabolic cost of 12% versus walking with the exoskeleton powered-off. Walking with the exoskeleton was perceived less fatiguing for the muscles compared to normal walking. Assistance resulted in a statistically nonsignificant reduction in metabolic cost of 4% versus walking with normal shoes, likely due to the penalty of wearing the exoskeleton powered-off. Also, exoskeleton mechanical power was relatively low compared to previously identified optimal assistance magnitude in young adults. Future exoskeleton research should focus on further optimizing exoskeleton assistance for specific populations and on considerate integration of exoskeletons in rehabilitation or in daily life. As such, exoskeletons should allow people to walk longer or faster than without assistance and could result in an increase in physical activity and resulting health benefits.

AB - Elderly are confronted with reduced physical capabilities and increased metabolic energy cost of walking. Exoskeletons that assist walking have the potential to restore walking capacity by reducing the metabolic cost of walking. However, it is unclear if current exoskeletons can reduce energy cost in elderly. Our goal was to study the effect of an exoskeleton that assists plantarflexion during push-off on the metabolic energy cost of walking in physically active and healthy elderly. Seven elderly (age 69.3 ± 3.5 y) walked on treadmill (1.11 m s2) with normal shoes and with the exoskeleton both powered (with assistance) and powered-off (without assistance). After 20 min of habituation on a prior day and 5 min on the test day, subjects were able to walk with the exoskeleton and assistance of the exoskeleton resulted in a reduction in metabolic cost of 12% versus walking with the exoskeleton powered-off. Walking with the exoskeleton was perceived less fatiguing for the muscles compared to normal walking. Assistance resulted in a statistically nonsignificant reduction in metabolic cost of 4% versus walking with normal shoes, likely due to the penalty of wearing the exoskeleton powered-off. Also, exoskeleton mechanical power was relatively low compared to previously identified optimal assistance magnitude in young adults. Future exoskeleton research should focus on further optimizing exoskeleton assistance for specific populations and on considerate integration of exoskeletons in rehabilitation or in daily life. As such, exoskeletons should allow people to walk longer or faster than without assistance and could result in an increase in physical activity and resulting health benefits.

KW - Elderly

KW - Exoskeleton

KW - Metabolic cost

KW - Plantarflexion assistance

KW - Walking

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85010219838&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85010219838&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.11.040

DO - 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2016.11.040

M3 - Article

C2 - 27915222

AN - SCOPUS:85010219838

VL - 52

SP - 183

EP - 188

JO - Gait and Posture

JF - Gait and Posture

SN - 0966-6362

ER -