Moving to Complex Skills More Quickly in Stroke Rehab


During stroke rehabilitation, therapists and physicians traditionally start patients with simple skills and then slowly build to more complex activities. The idea is to begin slowly and move to more demanding activities as the patient seems ready. Is there a more effective approach?

In this video, Shailesh Kantak, PhD, shares his research suggesting that patients could move to complex activities more quickly. The first phase of Dr. Kantak’s research found that patients benefit from beginning with more complex movements, which they can generalize to simpler tasks. In the second phase, he is exploring how the brain responds to simple vs. complex skills with the ultimate goal of being able to use non-invasive brain stimulation techniques to improve outcomes.

Dr. Kantak is an institute scientist at MRRI, where he directs the Neuroplasticity and Motor Behavior Laboratory. He is trained as a physical therapist with specialization in neurologic physical therapy and holds a PhD in biokinesiology from the University of Southern California.

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