Who’d a thought? Can someone make an “app” for that?

Interesting study that we just found out about in the June 15th LER journal titled “Patients with ankle instability respond to auditory feedback by changing gait”

In this study they put a sensor under the head of the 5th metatarsal in 10 folks with chronic ankle instability that would emit a sound in respose to excessive lateral ankle pressure. They were told to “walk quietly” and not let the beeper beep. After a short time, the people in the study were able to walk with decreased pressures in the lateral forefoot, in addition to the midfoot and central forefoot. EMG showed increase in peroneal and medial gastroc activity.

Interesting implications and also some questions.

This study shows that auditory feedback can alter behavior and gait. Is this a good thing? We suppose this depends on what you are trying to accomplish and does it ultimately benefit the patient?

this sensor could be made into an “app” that has some cool rehabilitation implications. Imagine a moveable sensor or multiple sensors that could track patterns over time and plot them for you? The auditory could be used to discourage some bevaiors/characteristics of gait and the “tracking” feature could provide progress information. Or maybe is it hooked up to some of your favorite music and it stops playing when you are not weighting appropriately. Wondering if your patient is loading the head of the 1st metatarsal? This could provide some feedback.

Check it out:

Donovan l, Hart JM, Saliba S et al. Effects of an auditory feedback device on plantar pressure in participants with chronic ankle instability. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2015; 46(5 suppl); S104