Assessing Walking Adaptability in Parkinson's Disease: “The Interactive Walkway”

Daphne J. Geerse*, Melvyn Roerdink, Johan Marinus, Jacobus J. van Hilten

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Introduction: In people with Parkinson's disease (PD) many aspects of walking ability deteriorate with advancing disease. Clinical tests typically evaluate single aspects of walking and to a lesser extent assess more complex walking tasks involving a combination of the three key aspects of walking ability (i.e., generating stepping, maintaining postural equilibrium, adapting walking). The Interactive Walkway allows for assessing more complex walking tasks to address features that are relevant for daily life walking of patients, including adaptive walking and dual-task walking.

Methods: To evaluate the expected added value of Interactive Walkway assessments in people with PD, we first evaluated its known-groups validity for outcome measures of unconstrained walking, adaptive walking and dual-task walking. Subsequently, these outcome measures were related to commonly used clinical test scores. Finally, we evaluated the expected added value of these outcomes over clinical tests scores in discriminating people with PD with and without freezing of gait.

Results: Interactive Walkway outcome measures showed significant differences between freezers, non-freezers and healthy controls, in expected directions. Most Interactive Walkway outcome measures were not or at best moderately correlated with clinical test scores. Finally, Interactive Walkway outcome measures of adaptive walking slightly better discriminated freezers from non-freezers than clinical tests scores.

Conclusion: We confirmed the added value of Interactive Walkway assessments, which provides a comprehensive evaluation of walking ability incorporating features of its three key aspects. Future studies are warranted to examine the potential of the Interactive Walkway for the assessment of fall risk and informing on tailored falls prevention programs in people with PD and in other populations with impaired walking ability.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1096
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalFrontiers in Neurology
Issue numberDecember
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 2018


  • adaptive walking
  • dual-task walking
  • Interactive Walkway
  • Parkinson's disease
  • unconstrained walking
  • walking ability assessment


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