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Cyberpsychol Behav. 2006 Apr;9(2):123-8.

Feasibility, motivation, and selective motor control: virtual reality compared to conventional home exercise in children with cerebral palsy.

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  • 1Rehabilitation Sciences, Health Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.


Children with cerebral palsy (CP) have difficulty controlling and coordinating voluntary muscle, which results in poor selective control of muscle activity. Children with spastic CP completed ankle selective motor control exercises using a virtual reality (VR) exercise system and conventional (Conv) exercises. Ankle movements were recorded with an electrogoniometer. Children and their parents were asked to comment on their interest in the exercise programs. Greater fun and enjoyment were expressed during the VR exercises. Children completed more repetitions of the Conv exercises, but the range of motion and hold time in the stretched position were greater during VR exercises. These data suggest that using VR to elicit or guide exercise may improve exercise compliance and enhance exercise effectiveness.

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