Evaluating the effects of reflex-inhibiting patterns among hemiplegic patients using EMG biofeedback.

R. Dickstein, T. Pillar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bobath's hypothesis--that the reflex-inhibiting patterns (RIP)s of a hemiplegic patient's non-exercising limb will prevent an abnormal increase in the muscle tone while the ipsilateral limb is being exercised--is examined in this study with the aid of an EMG biofeedback unit. Recordings were taken of the biceps brachii muscle of 15 patients during performance of lower extremity exercise, and from the medial gastrocnemius muscle of 12 patients during performance of an upper extremity exercise. Each muscle was examined six times in the same session: three of these repetitions being conducted in a RIP, the other three in a neutral position. The highest EMG values recorded in each of the two test situations were compared. The results did not point to a definite relationship between the RIPs and the electrical activity of the test muscles. Bobath's claim that there exists a consistent trend relating RIPs to reduction of muscle tone is therefore placed in doubt. Further research using objective techniques is required as a means of exploring this issue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)141-143
Number of pages3
JournalPhysiotherapy Canada. Physiotherapie Canada
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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