Research Topic

Controlling Wearable Healthcare Robots: New Challenges and Applications to Clinical and Personal Devices

About this Research Topic

Recent trends confirm that the demand for wearable robotics is growing dramatically. This is confirmed by recent market studies which forecast a considerable shift in the market size, which is expected to grow from today’s $200 M to $3.5 B in 2026. Within the domain of wearable robots, healthcare exoskeletons will hold a dominant share. This need is manifested because of the quick increase in the need for treatment of motor and neuromotor diseases, such as stroke, spinal cord injury, neurodegenerative diseases and brain injury. Hence, researchers are currently developing novel devices and technologies to fulfil this need and are increasing user acceptability through co-development approaches, which directly involve end-users in the process, to facilitate their adoption by the final user.

This Research Topic aims at collecting cutting-edge research in the field of wearable robotics targeting both rehabilitation and personal use for the assistance of upper or lower limbs movements, with a particular focus on continuity of care. In particular, although mechanical design and control strategy developments are the focus of the vast majority of current contributions when coming to motor relearning, the kinematics and dynamics of the induced/supported movement are of key importance.

The focus of this Research Topic is, therefore, on the pattern generation and high-level control of wearable robotics for upper or lower limbs assistance. We welcome research applied to real-world use case scenarios and interdisciplinary works conducted in co-development with clinicians and/or with other stakeholders, with a specific focus on the end-user, i.e. user-centred design. Specific focus will be devoted to robotics-based clinical research for (neuro)rehabilitation. Any research Technology Readiness Level is welcome.

Topics of Interest include, but are not limited to:

• Human-aware or human-in-the-loop trajectory planning and control for upper or lower limbs movement assistance.
• Development of locomotion control strategies and gait pattern generation for the assistance towards motor re-learning.
• Design of novel (neuro)rehabilitation training protocols and quantitative methods for the assessment of the recovery, both from a behavioral and motor control point of view.

​Topic Editor Marta Gandolla is a Co-Founder of AGADE srl. All other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.


Keywords: Applied Research, Assistive Wearable Robotics, Clinical Research, Control Design, Electroencephalography, Electromyography, Locomotion Control, Mechatronics, Neurorehabilitation, Rehabilitation Robotics, User-Centred Design, Wearable Robotics.


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Recent trends confirm that the demand for wearable robotics is growing dramatically. This is confirmed by recent market studies which forecast a considerable shift in the market size, which is expected to grow from today’s $200 M to $3.5 B in 2026. Within the domain of wearable robots, healthcare exoskeletons will hold a dominant share. This need is manifested because of the quick increase in the need for treatment of motor and neuromotor diseases, such as stroke, spinal cord injury, neurodegenerative diseases and brain injury. Hence, researchers are currently developing novel devices and technologies to fulfil this need and are increasing user acceptability through co-development approaches, which directly involve end-users in the process, to facilitate their adoption by the final user.

This Research Topic aims at collecting cutting-edge research in the field of wearable robotics targeting both rehabilitation and personal use for the assistance of upper or lower limbs movements, with a particular focus on continuity of care. In particular, although mechanical design and control strategy developments are the focus of the vast majority of current contributions when coming to motor relearning, the kinematics and dynamics of the induced/supported movement are of key importance.

The focus of this Research Topic is, therefore, on the pattern generation and high-level control of wearable robotics for upper or lower limbs assistance. We welcome research applied to real-world use case scenarios and interdisciplinary works conducted in co-development with clinicians and/or with other stakeholders, with a specific focus on the end-user, i.e. user-centred design. Specific focus will be devoted to robotics-based clinical research for (neuro)rehabilitation. Any research Technology Readiness Level is welcome.

Topics of Interest include, but are not limited to:

• Human-aware or human-in-the-loop trajectory planning and control for upper or lower limbs movement assistance.
• Development of locomotion control strategies and gait pattern generation for the assistance towards motor re-learning.
• Design of novel (neuro)rehabilitation training protocols and quantitative methods for the assessment of the recovery, both from a behavioral and motor control point of view.

​Topic Editor Marta Gandolla is a Co-Founder of AGADE srl. All other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.


Keywords: Applied Research, Assistive Wearable Robotics, Clinical Research, Control Design, Electroencephalography, Electromyography, Locomotion Control, Mechatronics, Neurorehabilitation, Rehabilitation Robotics, User-Centred Design, Wearable Robotics.


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

28 May 2021 Abstract
27 August 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

28 May 2021 Abstract
27 August 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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