Hand rehabilitation using MIDI keyboard playing in adolescents with brain damage: A preliminary study

Hyun Ju Chong, Sung Rae Cho, Soo Ji Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: As a sequential, programmed movement of fingers, keyboard playing is a promising technique for inducing execution and a high level of coordination during finger movements. Also, keyboard playing can be physically and emotionally rewarding for adolescents in rehabilitation settings and thereby motivate continued involvement in treatment. OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effects of keyboard playing using Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) on finger movement for adolescents with brain damage. METHODS: Eight adolescents with brain damage, ages 9 to 18 years (M = 13 years, SD = 2.78), in physical rehabilitation settings participated in this study. Measurements included MIDI keyboard playing for pressing force of the fingers and hand function tests (Grip and Pinch Power Test, Box and Block Test of Manual Dexterity [BBT], and the Jebsen Taylor Hand Function Test). RESULTS: Results showed increased velocity of all fingers on the MIDI-based test, and statistical significance was found in the velocity of F2 (index finger), F3 (middle finger), and F5 (little finger) between pre-and post-training tests. Correlation analysis between the pressing force of the finger and hand function tests showed a strong positive correlation between the measure of grip power and the pressing force of F2 and F5 on the Grip and Pinch Strength Test. All fingers showed strong correlation between MIDI results and BBT. For the Jebsen Taylor Hand Function Test, only the moving light objects task at post-training yielded strong correlation with MIDI results of all fingers. CONCLUSIONS: The results support using keyboard playing for hand rehabilitation, especially in the pressing force of individual finger sequential movements. Further investigation is needed to define the feasibility of the MIDI program for valid hand rehabilitation for people with brain damage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-155
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2014


  • Keyboard playing
  • MIDI
  • adolescents
  • brain damage
  • hand rehabilitation


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