Exciting new approaches to help older people to recover from illness or manage long-term conditions like dementia and arthritis.

Many people experience problems with mobility. We know that this can make it harder to exercise, contributing to an increased risk to an individual’s independence and leading to worse health outcomes. Poor balance can cause anxiety – more than 30% of people over 65 years of age experience a fall each year.

Sometimes a change in mobility can be a pre-cursor to developing a chronic disease such as dementia and Parkinson’s disease. Many neurodegenerative disorders require intensive, motor re-learning interventions and while exercise can improve mobility, we need to develop more effective treatments.

We use experimental medicine to help develop a new generation of ways to improve mobility in older people and develop effective precision rehabilitation available to everybody. This will include surgery, medication, devices and therapy. With other themes, we will be exploring how co-interventions, such as medications and nutrition can enhance rehabilitation outcomes across a broad range of diseases.

We work with VSimulators, a cutting-edge facility that brings together biomedical and rehabilitation specialists to help shape the future of human movement research. VSimulators provides a platform for multi-disciplinary research to study the human experience of real-world environments. The facility can simulate real world environments for testing and data collection through synchronising a motion platform with nine force plates, headset virtual reality, motion capture technology and biomedical sensing equipment. It is used to support research in the sectors of medicine, health, biomechanics and engineering.

Meet the Scientists

Watch this video to hear theme lead Prof Helen Dawes talk about our ground-breaking rehabilitation research in partnership with VSimulators.