About Professor Colleen Canning

Colleen is committed to developing and testing exercise interventions with the potential to promote health and well-being in people with Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders.

Professor Canning is an internationally recognised researcher in the area of Parkinson’s disease, specifically the contribution of motor impairments to disability and falls; and the role of exercise in maintaining mobility and preventing falls.

Prof Canning’s early research focused on the contribution of motor impairments to disability following stroke and her more recent research focuses on the contribution of impairments to disability in Parkinson’s disease and the development and testing of interventions to improve mobility and reduce falls in this population.

Prof Canning’s output includes 44 original research full length papers in international peer-reviewed journals (535 citations with an h-index of 15), 1 edited book and 9 book chapters.

She has attracted over $1.4 million in competitive research funding, including NHMRC, non-government and philanthropic organisations.

She supervises or has supervised 10 PhD/Masters students and 15 Honours students.

Prof Canning’s is committed to translating research results into practice.  She regularly presents at international and national conferences including invited plenary addresses at the 5th Biennial Australian and New Zealand Falls Prevention Conference (2012), World NeuroRehabilitation Conference (2012), Parkinson’s Australia National Conference (2008) and the 1st National Neurology and Gerontology Conference of the Australian Physiotherapy Association (2005). She is a regular reviewer for high-impact international journals, such as Movement Disorders, Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, Gait and Posture, Parkinsonism and Related Disorders, Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and Clinical Rehabilitation.  She is also a regular grant reviewer for national (eg, NHMRC) and international organisations (eg, Parkinson’s UK). 
 Since 2005, Prof Canning has contributed over 30 invited presentations at continuing education workshops for physiotherapists, health professionals and people with Parkinson’s disease (including 12 one-to-three-day workshops), providing cutting-edge research evidence and implications for prescribing exercise interventions for people with neurological conditions.  She was elected to the Board of Parkinson’s NSW in 2011, and has been an active as well as the Scientificactive member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Parkinson’s NSW since 2006. In these roles, she is regularly invited to present her current research to community groups and to provide consultative advice on all matters relating to exercise in Parkinson’s disease. Prof Canning answers numerous queries about Parkinson’s disease, exercise and physiotherapy on an annual basis, including international requests for information from USA, Canada, Europe, the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific.

Selected publications

Paul SS, Canning CG, Sherrington C, Fung VSC (2012). Motor and Cognitive Impairments in Parkinson Disease: Relationships With Specific Balance and Mobility Tasks.  Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair. Published online May 23, 2102 as DOI: 10.1177/1545968312446754

Paul SS, Canning CG, Sherrington C, Fung VSC (2012) Reduced muscle strength is the major determinant of reduced leg muscle power in Parkinson’s disease. Parkinsonism and Related Disorders 18:635-637.

Canning CG,
Allen N, Dean CM, Fung VSC (2012) Home-based treadmill training for individuals with Parkinson’s disease: a pilot randomized trial.  Clinical Rehabilitation 26:817-826.

Allen NE, Sherrington C, Canning CG, Paul S (2011) Balance and falls in Parkinson’s disease: a meta-analysis of the effect of exercise and motor training.  Movement Disorders 9:1605-1615.

Allen NE, Canning CG, Sherrington C, Lord SR, Latt MD, Close JCT, O’Rourke SD, Murray SM, Fung VSC (2010) The effects of an exercise program on fall risk factors in people with Parkinson’s disease: a randomized controlled trial.  Movement Disorders 25:1217-1225.

Canning CG
, Sherrington C, Lord SR, Fung VSC, Close JCT, Latt MD, Howard K, Allen NE, O’Rourke SD, Murray SM (2009)  Exercise therapy for prevention of falls in people with Parkinson’s disease: A protocol for a randomised controlled trial and economic evaluation.  BMC Neurology 9,4.

Ada L, Dorsch S, Canning CG (2006)  Strengthening interventions increase strength and improve activity after stroke: a systematic review.  Australian Journal of Physiotherapy 52:241-248.

Canning CG
 (2005) The effect of directing attention during walking under dual-task conditions in Parkinson’s disease.  Parkinsonism and Related Disorders 11:95-99.

Canning CG
, Ada A, Adams R, O’Dwyer N (2004)  Loss of strength, not dexterity, is the most significant contributer to disability after stroke.  Clinical Rehabilitation 18:300-308.

Canning, C
, Alison, J, Allen, N, Groeller, H  (1997)  Parkinson’s disease:  An investigation of exercise capacity, respiratory function and gait.  Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 78: 199-207.