This article explains how robots can help people recover after neurological injury. The most successful robot-administered therapy to aid neuro-recovery is based on several principles of learning. A visual display indicates a target location to which the patient should attempt to move. The robot sets up a virtual channel between the current location of the patient’s limb and the target location. If the patient moves along that channel, no forces are experienced. However, if the patient’s motion deviates to either side of that channel, those aiming errors are permitted but resisted by a programmable damped spring. If the patient moves too slowly (or does not initiate movement at all), the back wall of the channel (the end at the patient’s starting location) moves smoothly towards the target location, nudging the patient to the target. Repeating this process with high intensity provides the stimulus and statistics for the brain to reacquire movement control and coordination. Passively moving a patient’s limbs may help improve joint mobility.

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