The authors' aim was to investigate the effects of continuous transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) combined with virtual reality training on static and functional balance in children with cerebral palsy (CP). Twenty children with CP (6 girls and 14 boys; M age = 7 years 6 months ± 2 years) were randomly allocated to two groups. The experimental group received active tDCS and the control group received sham stimulation during the 10 sessions of virtual reality mobility training protocols. The children were evaluated on 3 occasions (preintervention, postintervention, and 1-month follow-up). Static balance was evaluated using a force plate under 4 conditions: feet on force plate with (a) eyes open and (b) with eyes closed, and feet on foam mat with (c) eyes open and (d) with eyes closed. Functional balance was evaluated using the Pediatric Balance Scale and the Timed Up and Go Test. The analyses demonstrated statistically significant postintervention and follow-up effects favoring the experimental group over the control group with regard to the Pediatric Balance Scale, Timed Up and Go Test, and area of oscillation of the center of pressure when standing on the force plate with eyes open. The present findings suggest that tDCS can potentiate the effects of virtual reality training on static and functional balance among children with CP.
- electrical stimulation
- functional balance
- static balance
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Cognitive Neuroscience