Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 11-30-2022

Faculty Advisor(s)

Rahul Soangra, Michael Shiraishi


Parkinson's disease is a neurological disorder that causes tremors and freezing of gait in diagnosed patients. Freezing of gait can be difficult to identify and intervene without laboratory based instruments data collection. Force plates have been proven to show viable results in identifying gait events such as heel contact and toe off. The complete gait cycle consists of a right-heel strike, right heel-to-toe shift, simultaneous right-toe off/left heel strike, left heel-to-toe shift, and a simultaneous left-toe off/right heel strike. This study will investigate center of pressure trajectories when initiating gait between healthy and Parkinson's participants. It is predicted that the strategy of shifting the center of pressure when taking the first step from a static position will vary from a healthy participant to a Parkinson's patient. Participants were prompted to initiate gait under single and dual-task conditions. Dual-task trials consisted of a STROOP task using a virtual reality environment that asked participants to identify the color of the words displayed on the screen while also initiating gait. Motion capture technology and a treadmill with measurable force plates was utilized to measure the first steps of a subject's gait cycle. Data from this study will help understand gait initiation strategies followed by Parkinson's disease participants and healthy individuals. We will collect data from 30 more participants to understand how the center of pressure varies between Parkinson's and healthy individuals.


Presented at the Fall 2022 Student Scholar Symposium at Chapman University.