Centre for Rehabilitation Research & Development


The Centre for Rehabilitation for Research and Development (CRRD) is uniquely situated in The Ottawa Hospital Rehabilitation Centre (TOHRC). TOHRC specializes in the physical rehabilitation of those who have experienced a disabling physical illness or injury, providing both inpatient and outpatient services and so facilitates our research focus on the clinical and practical application of rehabilitation services. Researchers have access to a wide variety of specialized facilities and equipment primarily used for assessment and treatment of patients including driving simulation equipment, therapy pool and the Independent Living Unit (ILU) - an accessible apartment within the centre. Other specialized resources available for research use are:

The Rehabilitation Virtual Reality Lab Ed Lemaire

The Rehabilitation Virtual Reality Lab (RVR Lab) is a state-of-the-art facility for physical rehabilitation assessment, therapy and research. With the RVR Lab, people living with disabilities can use world-class rehabilitation virtual reality services to improve their mobility and balance. The RVR Lab uses the CAREN (Computer-Assisted Rehabilitation Environment) Extended System. CAREN combines room-sized 3D graphics, a platform that moves with the person as they explore the 3D world, a dual-tread remote-controlled treadmill, and world-class motion analysis technology. Preprogrammed visual presentations allow the patient to respond to an ‘environmental stimulus’ by shifting weight, increasing or decreasing speed and even making specific motions. The system has a rigorous safety support system which allows the patient or research participant to experience various stimuli and physical situations in a very safe and controlled environment. CAREN enables researchers to analyze balance behavior, latency, response times and the relations between different sensory inputs that affect decision making, balance, posture, and locomotion behaviours. Research protocols can be accommodated through the use of standard or custom programming of the system.

Engineering Design, Prototyping and Test Facilities Patricia O’Neill

Located on the first floor of TOHRC, Rehabilitation Engineering has facilities and equipment for engineering design, prototype fabrication and testing. In addition to the provision of clinical services for individuals with physical disabilities, Rehabilitation Engineering staff have expertise in developing new assistive technologies, equipment and tools to assist clinicians in delivering care and custom instrumentation for research. Evaluation of assistive devices for mobility is also an area of expertise. Services are available on a fee-for-service basis. Resources include design software, a machine shop including a CNC milling machine, electronics development lab, and device testing equipment.

Rehabilitation Technology Laboratory Ed Lemaire and Patricia O’Neill

The Rehabilitation Technology Lab is located in Room 1503 on the first floor of TOHRC. This multi-purpose lab is equipped for:

  • quantitative motion analysis
    • Vicon, XSens, Goniometers, Foot switches
    • EMG, force transducers, other analog data
    • FScan foot pressure analysis, force plate
  • data processing, analysis
  • assistive device evaluation and testing

Prosthetics and Orthotics Fabrication Services Ed Lemaire and Marice Prior

Prosthetics and Orthotics at TOHRC is a nationally accredited facility for the creation of a full range of prosthetic and orthotic devices.