Pediatric Rehabilitation Technology Lab

Welcome to the PRT Lab!

The overall goal of our research is two-fold:

  1. Understand how and why humans in the early stages of life move the way they do.

The quantity and quality of postural, locomotor, and manual actions, as well as the timing of their acquisition are essential to overall development. Our research examines how humans integrate musculoskeletal mechanics and sensorimotor control to develop these skills for the first time in life.

  1. Develop and/or assess technologies to promote movement in the early stages of life for populations with or at risk for movement disorders.

Our group mainly focus on the following assistive technologies: pediatric exoskeletons, wearable devices, socially assistive robots, and mechanical body support devices. In particular, we are interested in: (i) how young humans interact with these technologies, (ii) developing ways to make these interactions more efficient to maximize their use for motor training, and (iii) evaluating the effects of use of these technologies on postural, locomotor, and manual performance.

Approach

Our research projects are designed based on principles from the areas of movement biomechanics, human-robot interaction, and developmental science. We are using rapid prototyping methods to develop devices, and state-of-the-art motion collection and analysis tools to assess the biomechanics of movement. In addition, we are exploring experimental approaches for real-world applications in collaboration with clinicians.