Breakthrough Biomedical Music powered by Merging Technologies

Pyramix Stephen Bartlett

A truly international cooperation has seen a radical new Biomedical Music™project nominated as a finalist at this prestigious event. On February 8, South by Southwest (SXSW) announced the Movement Tracks Project as a finalist for their Interactive Innovation Awards, which honor ground-breaking advancements from 2017. A collaboration between therapists and musicians to use Biomedical Music™ solutions to help people with movement disorders walk again, Movement Tracks will highlight the Gait Trainer 3 treadmill system from Biodex Medical Systems, Inc. at the March 11 SXSW Finalist Showcase.

Appropriately for an event in Austin, the Center for Music Therapy, Austin, Texas will feature innovative Gait Training technology from Biodex Medical Systems that merges therapist-informed music with a gait training treadmill system, as well as emerging “smart” wearable technologies to achieve better treatment outcomes for individuals with impaired movement. A key element of this system is the optimum audio quality needed to make the treatment effective. In his quest for the best, Stephen Bartlett, lead engineer on these special recordings, looked to industry leading brands to make this a reality. Merging Technologies, PMC and Rupert Neve are all providing key components for the project. The recordings are originated in DXD on Merging’s Pyramix and the replay for the patients is from a customized version of Ovation. This can provide the necessary adjustments in tempo and pitch that are essential for this therapy to be tailored to each patients’ unique condition.

“We are gratified to see organizations like SXSW bring the needed public attention to the dramatic improvements Biomedical Music brings to individuals with impaired movement,” said Hope Young, Executive Producer of Movement Tracks, a project of the Center For Music Therapy. “Especially those suffering from neurologic diseases like MS, Parkinson’s and Cerebral Palsy.”

The Biodex Gait Trainer 3 is an advanced gait training treadmill that combines audio cueing and visual biofeedback to help prompt correct movement during gait training. The instrumented deck unique to Biodex allows therapists to track various gait parameters and document patient progress. Last year, Movement Tracks Project produced historic recordings using principles of music-based therapy for treatment of movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease.

These recordings, offered as an optional Music-Assisted Therapy Package with the Gait Trainer, combine with biofeedback to enhance neuroplasticity and drive faster outcomes. This is the first time informed music and biomedical technology have merged to bring this powerful evidence-based treatment to clinics around the world.

Young adds, “The results have been spectacular and this is a combination of the fantastic compositions, amazing musicians and the fidelity of the equipment. Merging Technologies have responded to our exacting requirements to get this project up and running and we will be working with them on a practical solution for high resolution playback in the therapy rooms.”

The Interactive Innovation Awards Finalist Showcase will take place on Sunday, March 11 followed by the Interactive Innovation Awards ceremony on Tuesday, March 13.