Aim: The objective of this paper was to systematically review the efficacy of interventions targeting high-level mobility skills in people with a neurological impairment. Methods: A comprehensive electronic database search was conducted. Study designs were graded using the American Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine (AACPDM) system and methodological quality was described using the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale. Results: Twelve exploratory studies (AACPDM levels IV/V), of limited methodological quality (PEDro scores of 2–3 out of 10), were included. Interventions included treadmill training, a three-phase programme, a high-level mobility group, plyometric training, running technique coaching and walk training with blood flow restriction. Diagnoses included acquired brain injury, cerebral palsy, incomplete spinal cord injury and neurofibromatosis type 1. There were difficulties generalizing results from exploratory designs with a broad range of participants, interventions and outcome measures. However, it seems that people with a neurological impairment have the capacity to improve high-level mobility skills, running speed and distance with intervention. There were no adverse events that limited participation. Conclusion: There is preliminary evidence to support the efficacy of interventions to improve high-level mobility skills in people with neurological impairments. Well-controlled research with a larger sample is required to provide sufficient evidence to change clinical practice.
- motor skills
- neurological disorder