Previously, we reported a novel bilateral upper-limb rehabilitation system, an adaptive admittance controller and a related bilateral recovery strategy. In this study, we want to get a stronger evidence to verify the robustness of the proposed system, controller and recovery strategy as well as to further investigate the possibility of bilateral trainings for clinical applications. To this end, ten healthy subjects took part in a 60-minute experiment. Trajectories of robots and interaction force were recorded under the proposed bilateral recovery strategy which contained four exercise modes. For mode-l and mode-2, results showed that the trajectories of master and slave robots can catch the reference trajectory very well, and be changed with active interaction force applied by participants. For mode-3 and mode-4, participants finished tasks very well by drawing the ‘square-shaped’ trajectories through their own force. In conclusion, the experimental results were good enough to provide a strong and positive evidence for the proposed system and controller. Moreover, according to the feedbacks from participants, the bilateral recovery strategy can be treated as a new and interesting training as compared to the traditional unilateral training, and could be tested in clinical applications further.
Compared to the traditional manual therapy, the robot involved therapy can alleviate labor-intensive aspects of conventional rehabilitation trainings, and provide precise passive/active repetitive trainings in a sufficiently long timeframe , . In terms of upper-limb rehabilitation trainings, some robotic systems have been developed for bilateral exercises, and figured out a problem that performing most activities of daily living tasks with one-hand is awkward, difficult and time-consuming .
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