We examined the behavioral characteristics of reactive turning in hemiplegic stroke patients when they were informed of the turning direction just before turning was required at an unpredictable time. Eleven stroke patients and 20 healthy elderly control people were asked to initiate a turn as soon as a visual cue to inform them of the turning direction was activated unpredictably using a foot switch. Both the segmental reorientation and stepping type when turning 90° while walking were measured. The results indicated preserved segmental reorientation of the head and pelvis in stroke patients. Stroke patients showed delays in pelvic turning but not in head turning. Their delayed pelvic movement might be due to motor dysfunction and the time taken to ensure stability when deciding when to turn.
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