Tailwind's co-inventors are University of Maryland School of Medicine researchers Dr. Jill Whitall, PhD, a professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science at the University of Maryland at Baltimore, and Dr. Sandra A. McCombe Waller, PT, PhD, NCS, an assistant professor in the same department.
Dr. Jill WhitallDr. Jill Whitall is a member of the Encore Path Scientific Advisory Board. She is also Director of Research and Co-Director of the Neuromotor Core within the Baltimore Claude Pepper Independence for Older Americans Center.
Dr. Whitall is currently pursuing two lines of research. One project, in conjunction with colleagues, is investigating interventions in patients with hemiparesis (partial paralysis, usually on one side of the body) and the underlying mechanisms of recovery. The second project concerns the identification of children with developmental coordination disorder and the investigation of possible underlying mechanisms related to sensory-motor coupling.
She has almost 20 years of experience in mentoring graduate students at the University of Wisconsin, Madison and at UMB. Since arriving at UMB, Dr. Whitall has supervised five research projects of physical therapy students. She teaches students the principles of motor control, learning and motor development as they relate to rehabilitation.
Dr. Whitall trains her students to use and develop paradigms to assess motor coordination and methods of reducing/analyzing coordination data. In addition, she and her students are actively developing better methods of intervention for adults with stroke and children with movement problems.
She earned her BEd from the University of Keele in England, an M.A. from the University of London in England, and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, College Park. Over the years, she has authored or co-authored more than 50 published articles and book chapters, given dozens of presentations and speeches, and is a member of several professional organizations. Some of them include the International Society for Motor Control, International Society for Neurorehabilitation, and the American Physical Therapy Association. She is also on the editorial board for the Journal of Motor Behavior.
Dr. Sandra McCombe WallerDr. Sandra McCombe Waller serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of Encore Path. She is also currently involved in research as part of the Claude Pepper Center to study an innovative combination of bilateral and unilateral training to improve arm and hand function in patients with moderate severity paresis after brain injury.
In addition, Dr. McCombe Waller studies the underlying neural mechanisms associated with recovery of function with unilateral, bilateral and combination therapies using transcranial magnetic stimulation and functional magnetic resonance imaging. She has collaborated over the last eight years with Dr. Jill Whitall in research involving bilateral arm training with rhythmic auditory cueing.
Dr. McCombe Waller graduated with her BS from the University of Maryland in 1985, earned her MS from Johns Hopkins University in 1991, and completed her Doctoral Training in Physical Rehabilitation Science at UMB in 2004 in the area of Neuromotor Control. She is also board certified as a Neurological Clinical Specialist. Dr. McCombe Waller has over 20 years experience teaching the clinical neurology content in the physical therapy program.
From 2003 until 2007, she served as Director of the Entry-level Physical Therapy Program. Her current focus includes ongoing teaching in the entry-level program, mentoring of doctoral students and research in the area of neuromotor control.
For three consecutive years, Dr. McCombe Waller has been named the Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year by the University of Maryland School of Medicine Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science. She is a member of several professional organizations, including the American Physical Therapy Association’s Section on Neurology and the Society of Neuroscience, among others; and she has authored and co-authored more than 15 published articles and book chapters.
Encore Path Corporate GuidanceEncore Path benefits from the guidance of leaders in health care, technology, and stroke care, including:
Scientific Advisory Board
- Daniel F. Hanley, MD, Encore Path Chief Medical Officer; Vice Chairman of the Board, National Stroke Association; and Director, Brain Injury Outcomes Program, Johns Hopkins Medicine
- Jill Whitall, PhD, Tailwind co-inventor and Professor, Physical Therapy and Rehabilitative Science, University of Maryland, Baltimore
- Sandy McCombe Waller, PhD, Tailwind co-inventor and Assistant Professor, Physical Therapy and Rehabilitative Science, University of Maryland, Baltimore