2015 Volume 27 Issue 3 Pages 845-849
[Purpose] The purpose of this study was to investigate the therapeutic effects of virtual reality-based ankle exercise on the dynamic balance, muscle tone, and gait ability of stroke subjects. [Subjects and Methods] Twenty persons who were in the chronic stroke subjects of this study and they were included and assigned to two groups: experimental (VRAE; Virtual Reality-based Ankle Exercise group) (n=10) and control groups (n=10). The VRAE group performed virtual environment system ankle exercise, and the control group watched a video. Both groups performed their respective interventions for 30 minutes per day, 5 times per week over a 6-week period. To confirm the effects of the intervention, dynamic balance, muscle tone, and spatiotemporal gait were evaluated. [Results] The results showed that the dynamic balance and muscle tone was significantly more improved after the intervention compared to before in the VRAE group (dynamic balance: 5.50±2.57; muscle tone: 0.90±0.39), and the improvements were more significant than those in the control (dynamic balance: 1.22±2.05; muscle tone: 0.10±0.21). Spatiotemporal gait measures were significantly more increased in the paretic limb after the intervention compared to before in the VRAE group and the improvements were more significant than those in the control group. [Conclusion] This study demonstrated that virtual reality-based ankle exercise effectively improves the dynamic balance, muscle tone, and gait ability of stroke patients.