Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


College of Humanities and Social Sciences



Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Ruth E. Propper

Committee Member

Ghaith J. Androwis

Committee Member

Julian P. Keenan


There have been numerous research studies investigating the feasibility and effectiveness of exoskeleton-assisted gait training as a treatment for lower extremity motor rehabilitation in persons with multiple sclerosis (MS). However, while most of the research on exoskeleton- assisted gait training investigate its impact on general gait and balance during ambulation, investigating the effectiveness of exoskeleton gait training in improving walking adaptability remains underexplored. The present study aims to investigate the effectiveness of exoskeleton- assisted gait training compared to traditional gait training on improving walking adaptability in persons with MS. The study is a secondary analysis using data from a Kessler Foundation study investigating the feasibility and effectiveness of gait training for persons with MS assisted by an Ekso robotic exoskeleton compared to traditional gait training over the course of 8 weeks. The study specifically analyzes the data gathered from three gait adaptability tests performed on a C- Mill (Motek Force, DIH)-augmented reality treadmill: random stepping stones, obstacle avoidance, and track. The results indicate that while there were few significant differences between exoskeleton-assisted gait training and traditional gait training, effect sizes indicate that the exoskeleton-assisted gait training provide a larger clinically relevant improvement to gait adaptability as traditional gait training from pre-treatment to post-treatment. Future studies that investigate the impact of exoskeleton-assisted gait training on gait adaptability should incorporate larger samples of persons with MS, using the C-Mill walking adaptability tests to assess walking adaptability improvement resulting from exoskeleton gait training.

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Available for download on Wednesday, August 13, 2025

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