Paulo is a PhD Candidate at School of Public Health and Community Medicine (UNSW) and Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) who is interested in ageing process and Parkinson’s disease population. Moreover, Paulo has been investigating clinical, motor features and risk of falling in people with Parkinson’s disease. Currently, Paulo has been working on fNIRS analysis to understand the brain activity when older people and people with Parkinson’s disease are performing balance tasks. Also, Paulo has been working on a Randomized controlled trial to reduce the risk of falling in people with Parkinson’s disease.
VICKY SMITH Executive Assistant
JESSICA TURNER Research Assistant
JOANNE LO Research Assistant
CAMERON HICKS Research Assistant
DR ESTHER VANCE Senior Research Assistant
DANIELA MEINRATH Masters student
DR YOSHIRO OKUBO
JOANA CAETANO PhD student
MAYNA RATANAPONGLEKA Research Assistant
PROF CATHIE SHERRINGTON Senior research officer
We tested local vibration effects during upright standing considering: (i) the orientation of vibratory devices in relation to muscle fibres; (ii) the muscle region stimulated; and (iii) the number of stimulation spots. Results showed a higher balance disturbance with vibration devices oriented parallel to triceps surae muscle fibres. The single stimulation of the proximal region of the tibialis anterior muscle belly induces the same proprioceptive disturbance as stimulating multiple regions simultaneously.
Superior executive function, fast processing speed, and good muscle strength and balance were all associated with successful gait adaptability. Processing speed appears particularly important for precise foot placements; cognitive capacity for step length adjustments; and early and/or additional cognitive processing involving the inhibition of a stepping pattern for obstacle avoidance. This information may facilitate fall risk assessments and fall prevention strategies.
To evaluate age-related changes in gait adaptability in response to obstacles or stepping targets presented at short notice, i.e.: approximately two steps ahead. Compared with their younger counterparts, the older adults exhibited a more conservative adaptation strategy characterised by slow, short and multiple steps with longer time in double support. Even so, they demonstrated poorer stepping accuracy and made more stepping errors. This reduced gait adaptability may place older adults at increased risk of falling when negotiating unexpected hazards.