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Unpacking the Power of Interactive Metronome®: Comprehensive Review of Its Role in Occupational Therapy

White paper presented at national AOTA conference 2013


Adult, Motor Skills

This research project compiled and evaluated multiple pilot studies conducted over the last 5 years, assessing the efficacy and feasibility of Interactive Metronome® (IM) as a therapeutic modality in clinical practice.

In Study 1, improvements averaging 24% were noted in individuals over 55 who participated in the IM program, as measured by pre and post-test IM scores and the Nine Hold Peg Test (NHPT).

Study 2 compared clients who followed a standard Active Range of Motion (ROM) exercise program with those who undertook 8 IM training sessions. Here, IM participants showed a percentage change of 24%, as compared to just 10% in those following the in-home ROM exercise regimen.

In Study 3, two cases of Cerebrovascular Accident (CVA or stroke) patients were studied. Both patients demonstrated notable progress, with improvements sustained in a 30-day longevity retest, and further enhancement observed in a second series of IM training.

Lastly, Study 4 compared two groups: individuals post-CVA and healthy aging individuals. The data showed no significant differences in improvement percentages between the groups, suggesting that IM could be equally effective in both populations.

While IM has shown promising results as a treatment tool, the studies collectively suggested that it is most effective when used in combination with other occupational-based interventions.

Abridged Summary & Results of Study

A Collective Review of Completed Research Projects Evaluating the Effectiveness of the Interactive Metronome® as an Occupational Therapy Intervention

YEAR: 2013



The Review of the past 5 years of Interactive Metronome (IM) research on motor function (from 2008-2013) revealed a positive impact on fine motor skills. Study participants also indicated their belief that IM is an effective treatment. Although IM has been shown to be an effective treatment modality for use in clinic settings, it should be used in conjunction with more occupational- based interventions.


  • study 1 looked at normal individuals over the age of 55 and compared pre and post-test IM scores and those of the Nine Hold Peg Test (NHPT). Notable improvements ave. 24% and above were achieved.
  • study 2 compared those clients following standard of care Active ROM exercise program compared to those who received IM training for 8 sessions. The percentage of change was 24% for the IM participants as compared to 10% following the in-home ROM.
  • study 3 looked at 2 CVA cases – Both making notable changes with 30 days longevity retest and 2nd series of IM provided demonstrated performance improvement.
  • study 4 compared 22 individuals (post CVA and healthy aging subjects). There were no significant differences in percentage of improvement between groups, which indicates that IM may be just as effective with individuals post-CVA as in healthy aging population.

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