Introduction

For more than 20 years, the treadmill therapy proved itself as a successful therapy action based on evidence for the recovery and improvement of walking abilities of patients after a stroke or with spine and brain injuries. LokoHelp is an electromechanical walking trainer which, in combination with the treadmill, provides an advanced help for the performance of walking motion.

With the walking trainer, which relieves of the body weight and takes care of mechanical walking movements, even neurologically severely affected people can absolve a walking training. Through the movements of steps, circuits in the spine are awaken and activated even if the connection to the highest motion centres is damaged.

The therapy with LokoHelp offers high flexibility for the locomotion therapy through the application of various disease images and it depends on the individual capabilities of patients.

Characteristics

LokoHelp is an electromechanical walking trainer which is based on the end effector principle. The mechanical support for the standing and playing leg phase is performed on the foot on the last link of the kinematical chain. The patient should not be passively moved, but he should actively work too. The knee and hip stretching should be if possible ideally controlled by the patient himself.

The feet of the trainee are stretched during the therapy in special shoes and a belt system relieves a part of the weight of his own body. The legs are moved by the machine which allows a maximal speed of two km/h. Schooled therapists accompany and provide support for the patients during the difficult task. The leg is bent mechanically by the machine and taken forth, at the same time the standing leg is actively stretched and stabilised. The patient supports these processes dictated by LokoHelp walking trainer.

If it is possible, the patient should (if he is cognitively able) actively work along, even if it is possible only as a mental training. Thanks to a mirror, the patient also has the opportunity to visually imagine the motion.

The practice shows that the affected people recover their ability to walk thanks to the walking trainer and can extend the walking distance. The quality of the walking image is improved as well.

Goals

Studies prove that the treadmill therapy with the relief of body weight outclasses the ordinary training of walking, since the number of movement repeats of the standing and playing leg phase during the treadmill training is generally higher and therefore a clear improvement of the ability to walk can be expected in the long run.

Patients who cannot do any independent steps, even with helping tools, profit especially from the application of the LokoHelp. The push up, knee stretching and mobilisation of the hip are in the foreground.

Next to the motion of the standing and playing leg, the ability to keep a posture and control it is necessary for an independent ability to walk. During the LokoHelp training, the trunk and the pelvis of the patient are not stiffly fixed. That is why additional posture requests through corresponding tasks are required and trained.

This therapy can be applied also for cognitively limited patients. Through the rudimentary activation of walking, improvement of vigilance and sensibility for depth or surface and their perception can be partly reached by the activation of the walking pattern. Later, trunk, arm and shoulder muscles will be activated.

Impaired ability to walk of: 

Patients with spinal paralysis
Patients after stroke
Patients after skull brain trauma
Patients with infantile cerebral paresis
Patients with Morbus Parkinson
Patients with Multiple sclerosis
„Patients with Guillain-Barré-Syndrome and other neurological diseases
Patients after a hip or knee replacement“
Geriatric and orthopaedic patients

Patients for an improvement of:

Walking speed, walking condition
Walking symmetry and the length of steps
Joint mobility, length of muscles
Heart cycle functions for spasticity reduction

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