Publication Date



This paper examines how current understandings of childhood participation and motor development provide opportunities for using new technologies (such as virtual reality—VR) for children with neurodevelopmental disorders. Specifically, the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health is used to conceptualize the role of technology in treatment across body structures and body function, activity performance, and participation (WHO 2007, 2012). First, we review the particular motor control and learning mechanisms that have been implicated in children with atypical motor development, like DCD. This section will highlight avenues for targeted remediation. Next, VR-based rehabilitation systems are reviewed in relation to neurodevelopmental disorders, focusing first on CP and second on more recent applications for children with DCD. We describe the evolution of particular design innovations in virtual rehabilitation including recent advances using tangible interfaces, as well as other methods targeting cognitive function more specifically. Benefits of these various treatments will be viewed through the lens of current theory and evaluated at the level of child and family outcomes. Finally, we consider the broader aspects of the potential for technological innovation in rehabilitation and its impact on brain function, activity competence, and longer-term participation.

Document Type

Journal Article

Access Rights

ERA Access

Access may be restricted.