Open Access Research Article

Changes in Walking Spatiotemporal Parameters After Therapeutic Yoga in People with Chronic Stroke

Kristine K Miller1*, Peter Altenburger1, Tracy Dierks1, Arianne Mason1, Marieke Van Puymbroeck2 and Arlene A Schmid3

1Department of Physical Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Indiana University, USA

2Recreational Therapy Program, College of Behavioral, Social, and Health Sciences, Clemson University, USA

33Department of Occupational Therapy, College of Health and Human Sciences, Colorado State University, USA

Corresponding Author

Received Date: October 24, 2019;  Published Date: November 25, 2019


Walking limitations after stroke can contribute to long-term functional impairments. Walking characteristics such as spatiotemporal step parameters may be associated with these persistent walking limitations. The purpose of this study was to investigate changes in specific spatiotemporal walking parameters such as: walking speed; step length; swing time; step parameter symmetry; and double support time in adults with stroke who were participating in a therapeutic yoga intervention. The therapeutic yoga intervention was offered as a post-rehabilitation wellness activity 2 times per week for 8 weeks and was led by a yoga therapist. Spatiotemporal walking data were collected using the GAITRite Walkway System on a sub sample (n=24) of participants in a randomized controlled trial testing the efficacy of therapeutic yoga for improving balance in adults with chronic stroke. These data demonstrated that therapeutic yoga may have a positive impact on some spatiotemporal walking characteristics such as comfortable walking speed, step length, and double support time, while other spatiotemporal walking characteristics did not change (step parameter symmetry) or change at a significant level (sustained walking speed). The clinical relevance of this study is that participation in therapeutic yoga as a post-rehabilitation wellness activity may have a positive impact on walking characteristics in adults with chronic stroke.

Keywords: Stroke; Walking speed; Spatiotemporal step parameters; Therapeutic yoga

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