Walking to the beat of recovery: A music-based digital therapeutic

Music has remarkable potential to influence health. What if patients could throw on a pair of headphones, clip-on movement sensors, select their favorite playlist and walk to their own, personalized beat of recovery? We are working on technologies that can make this possible!

In collaboration with MedRhythms, we are studying a music-based digital therapeutic platform designed to leverage wearable movement sensor data to personalize a rhythm-based gait retraining program for patients with neuromotor impairments. When listening to music while walking, humans naturally change their cadence to match the beat. The music-based digital therapeutic that we are studying can systematically alter the beat of popular songs (while maintaining high sound quality) to help users change their cadence, and ultimately their speed. If the user struggles to match the beat, automatic rhythm-assist algorithms kick in that fine-tune the musical tempo to better match the user’s abilities and provide a metronome overlay, if necessary. Early findings from our research studies have shown that this music-based digital therapeutic can automate a progressive and individualized rhythm-based walking training program that increases walking speed and decreases the energy cost of walking after stroke.

Check out a video demo of the technology here:


Project Team


A Music-Based Digital Therapeutic: Proof-of-Concept Automation of a Progressive and Individualized Rhythm-Based Walking Training Program After Stroke.
Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
(see pdf or link)