dr. H.G. (Helco) van Keeken, PhD

Universitair Docent / Onderzoeker


Research interests

Helco G. van Keeken (born in the Netherlands, 1973) obtained the Atheneum degree at the KSG De Breul in Zeist in 1993. He studied Physical Therapy at the Hogeschool van Amsterdam, which he graduated from in 1997. He was awarded cum laude for his internships. The subject of his thesis was 'the segmental dysregulation'. After this study, he started working at the Rehabilitation Department of the Academical Medical Center Amsterdam in 1998, focusing on the orthopedic patient. In the four years that he worked there, he was involved in several innovative projects (CAREN, (E)Motions; Gait Analysis Internet Application (GAIA)) in collaboration with Motek BV. Amsterdam and University of Groningen, the Netherlands. These projects were funded by the European Community. In 2002 he started working as a scientific researcher at the University of Groningen, where he started his PhD study under supervision of Prof. Dr. E. Otten. This study was part of the project 'Postural Control After Lower Limb Amputation; changes in body representation and the recovery of postural control', in which the Center for Human Movement Sciences of the University of Groningen collaborated with the Center for Rehabilitation of the University Medical Center of Groningen and the Orthopedic Workshop Haren (OIM Foundation), the Netherlands. From 2007, he is working as a reseacher and a university teacher at the University of Groningen and as of 2016 he is also coordinator of the HMS Skills lab.


Main topics

• Postural control during stance & gait • Assistive technology • Classification in rehabilitation and adaptive sports • Motor control and learning • Virtual reality & virtual environments


Frame work

• Functional ability • Focus of attention, differential and discovery learning • (Real time) feedforward and feedback information for motor control and learning • Muscle synergies and reflexes • Neuromechanics & Energetics



• Biomechanics • Signal acquisition and analysis • CAREN & Grail • Instrumented treadmill • Prosthetic legs (kneewalker)



• M-Gait certified operator (2015) • CAREN certified operator (2014) • BROK (2013) • BKO (2011) 

  1. Predicting mobility outcome in lower limb amputees with motor ability tests used in early rehabilitation

    Spaan, M. H., Vrieling, A. H., van de Berg, P., Dijkstra, P. U. & van Keeken, H. G., Apr-2017, In : Prosthetics and Orthotics International. 41, 2, p. 171-177 7 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

  2. Biomechanics and ergonomics

    van Keeken, H., de Groot, S., Vegter, R. & van der Woude, L., 1-Jun-2016, Training and Coaching the Paralympic Athlete. Vanlandewijck, Y. & Thompson, W. (eds.). Chichester, West Sussex, UK; Ames, Iowa, USA: John Wiley & Sons, p. 21-53 32 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterProfessional

  3. Postural challenge affects motor cortical activity in young and old adults

    Papegaaij, S., Taube, W., van Keeken, H. G., Otten, E., Baudry, S. & Hortobagyi, T., Jan-2016, In : Experimental Gerontology. 73, p. 78-85 8 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

  4. Validation and User Evaluation of a Sensor-Based Method for Detecting Mobility-Related Activities in Older Adults

    Geraedts, H. A. E., Zijlstra, W., Van Keeken, H. G., Zhang, W. & Stevens, M., 11-Sep-2015, In : PLoS ONE. 10, 9, 11 p., e0137668.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Press / Media
  1. MatchMaking and Pitches; Ministerie van Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport

    Helco Keeken, van


    1 item of media coverage

    Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities

  2. Hoe?Zo! - Ali B visits CAREN lab Groningen

    Helco Keeken, van


    1 item of media coverage

    Press/Media: Public Engagement Activities

View all (5) »

  1. Workshop: Hands-on experinece with an optical motion capture system for motion analysis

    Helco Keeken, van (Speaker), Mohammed Khudair (Speaker)

    Activity: Talk or presentationProfessional

  2. Ability Battle Hackathon 2018, Human Movement Sciences

    Helco Keeken, van (Organiser)

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganising an eventProfessional

  3. Guest lecture at KU Leuven, faculty of movement and rehabilitation sciences

    Helco Keeken, van (Speaker), Riemer Vegter (Speaker)

    Activity: Talk or presentationProfessional

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