Keynote lecture

Modelling, models and masterpieces: Translating research into clinical practice


Evidence-based guidelines are important for effective clinical management. Without this evidence and appropriate scientific optimisation, the use of assistive devices results in poor treatment outcomes and poor patient experience. Although best practice guidelines have been published for describing orthotic interventions, there are gaps such as the lack of standardisation of the terminology.

Using our research data this talk will start by highlighting the need for further, structured work in this area. Currently, there is a paucity of detail reported in research studies regarding the design and material used in various orthotic interventions. Such a lack of detail not only has the potential to affect the validity of the reported outcomes and the ability to reproduce the studies but could also misinform clinical practice. Whilst arguing for wider research on clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of orthotic interventions, the talk will propose practical “next steps” on reducing the ambiguity of the description of the devices used.

The talk will also discuss that whilst scientific approaches underpin the development of interventions, artistic aspects of device design are extremely important to improve patient compliance. Devices which are not utilised by the user result in a failed intervention, regardless of the underpinning scientific approaches. Then advances in technology will be presented; we now have modelling techniques to help understand individual movement strategies and to provide a meaningful interpretation of segmental dominancy using patterns of movement control. Combining the resulting biomechanical knowledge with appropriate design characteristics we can create masterpieces to provide effective management and monitoring of interventions. The talk will conclude by focusing on how the current clinical practice needs to evolve to meet future needs including telehealth options.


Cleveland Barnett
Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, United Kingdom


Nachiappan Chockalingam
Staffordshire University, United Kingdom