Objective: We compared traditional training alone and with the addition of force feedback training for learning flexion-distraction chiropractic technique.
Methods: Participants were randomly allocated to two groups (traditional or traditional plus force feedback training). Students' forces were measured before training and after force feedback training. Students rated the helpfulness of the training and the comfort of the force transducer.
Results: Thirty-one students were enrolled. Both groups delivered similar forces at baseline. Group 1 students' subsequent force measurements were higher after force feedback training. Group 2 students' forces were unchanged. Group 2 students were trained with force feedback for week 2 of the class, and forces were higher after feedback and similar to those in group 1. Students rated the training as very or somewhat helpful. Students also experienced discomfort as a patient and a student-doctor due to the force transducer that was used. Students who received force feedback training learned to deliver higher forces, which were closer to the forces delivered by experienced doctors of chiropractic. Students who did not receive force feedback continued to deliver lower forces.
Conclusion: Force feedback helped students deliver forces closer to the desired force level and to learn this delivery faster than students who were not trained with force feedback.
Author keywords: Spinal Manipulation, Chiropractic, Motor Skills, Education, Formative Feedback, Learning
Author affiliations: RR: Diagnosis and Radiology Department, Palmer Chiropractic College, Davenport, Iowa; GMR: College of Chiropractic Medicine, Keiser University, West Palm Beach, Florida; SS: Academic Health Center, Palmer Chiropractic College, Davenport, Iowa
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