The Effects of Motor and Cognitive Secondary Tasks on Brain Activity and Gait Performance
Abstract: In everyday life, the ability to perform two tasks simultaneously, dual task, is an omnipresent issue. There are several factors that can limit an individual’s ability to dual task, such as neurological pathologies, or physical disabilities. A reduced ability to perform dual task activities can result in decreased gait performance, higher risk of falls, a high probability of reduced participation, as well as contributing to a number of deterioration processes in the body. There are numerous situations in which dual tasking is used in therapy, however, there is no consensus regarding what kind of dual task to train in order to have the most effective outcomes. The aim of this systematic review is to investigate the relative effect of motor versus cognitive dual task on brain activity patterns and gait performance. Ten studies were identified in a systematic literature review in order to provide insight into the current status concerning the topic. The results showed high variations of analysed parameters and a very small amount of studies examining motor dual tasks. However, results indicated that cognitive dual tasks had a greater impact on brain activity. In regard to gait performance, no definite answer was found. Given the importance of dual tasks in everyday life and the numerous groups of people experiencing difficulties while dual tasking, the possibilities of adapting dual tasks in therapy should be a topic of future research.
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