Several studies have shown that Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) is a condition that continues beyond childhood. Although adults with DCD report difficulties with dynamic balance, as well as frequent tripping and bumping into objects, there have been no specific studies on walking in this population. Some previous work has focused on walking in children with DCD but variation in the tasks and measures used has led to inconsistent findings. The aim of the current study therefore was to examine the characteristics of level walking in adults with and without DCD. Fifteen adults with DCD and 15 typically developing (TD) controls walked barefoot at a natural pace up and down an 11 m walkway for one minute. Foot placement measures and velocity and acceleration of the body were recorded, as well as measures of movement variability. The adults with DCD showed similar gait patterns to the TD group in terms of step length, step width, double support time and stride time. The DCD group also showed similar velocity and acceleration to the TD group in the medio-lateral, anterior-posterior and vertical direction. However, the DCD group exhibited greater variability in all foot placement and some body movement measures. The finding that adults with DCD have a reduced ability to produce consistent movement patterns is discussed in relation to postural control limitations and compared to variability of walking measures found in elderly populations.
Du, WenchongWilmut, KateBarnett, Anna L.
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Psychology, Social Work and Public Health
Year of publication: 2015Date of RADAR deposit: 2017-07-05