Your browser doesn't support javascript.
: 20 | 50 | 100
1 - 20 de 14.004
Hum Mov Sci ; 91: 103138, 2023 Oct.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37573800

Humans prioritize regulation of the whole-body angular momentum (WBAM) during walking. When perturbed, modulations of the moment arm of the ground reaction force (GRF) with respect to the centre of mass (CoM) assist in recovering WBAM. For sagittal-plane perturbations of the WBAM given at toe off right (TOR), horizontal GRF modulations and not centre of pressure (COP) modulations were mainly responsible for these moment arm modulations. In this study, we aimed to find whether the instant of perturbations affects the contributions of the GRF and/or CoP modulations to the moment arm changes, in balance recovery during very slow walking. Perturbations of the WBAM were applied at three different instants of the gait cycle, namely at TOR, mid-swing (MS), and heel strike right (HSR). Forces equal to 16% of the participant's body weight were applied simultaneously to the pelvis and upper body in opposite directions for a duration of 150 ms. The results showed that the perturbation onset did not significantly affect the GRF moment arm modulation. However, the contribution of both the CoP and GRF modulation to the moment arm changes did change depending on the perturbation instant. After perturbations resulting in a forward pitch of the trunk a larger contribution was present from the CoP modulation when perturbations were given at MS or HSR, compared to perturbations at TOR. After backward pitch perturbations given at MS and HSR the CoP modulation counteracted the moment arm required for WBAM recovery. Therefore a larger contribution from the horizontal GRF was needed to direct the GRF posterior to the CoM and recover WBAM. In conclusion, the onset of WBAM perturbations does not affect the moment arm modulation needed for WBAM recovery, while it does affect the way CoP and GRF modulation contribute to that recovery.

Gait , Walking , Humans , Walking/physiology , Gait/physiology , Motion , Pelvis/physiology , Gravitation , Biomechanical Phenomena , Postural Balance/physiology
Gait Posture ; 105: 132-138, 2023 09.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37562112

BACKGROUND: Individuals with peripheral vestibulopathy are known to have difficulty with volitional head turns. This leads to differences in head and body turning kinematics, compared to those without vestibular dysfunction. Multiple sclerosis (MS), a neuro-inflammatory disease affecting the central nervous system, can cause vestibular dysfunction (dizziness, unsteadiness, gaze instability). However, head and trunk turning kinematics in people with MS (PwMS) have not been assessed. RESEARCH QUESTION: Will PwMS, demonstrate head and body kinematics alterations similar to individuals with a peripheral dysfunction compared to vestibular healthy individuals? METHODS: Eleven individuals with a recent vestibular schwannoma resection (VSR), fourteen PwMS, and 10 healthy control (HC) participants were fitted with head and trunk worn inertial measurement units (IMUs) and performed walking and turning tasks. Head and trunk peak turning speed and amplitude were extracted. Regression models controlling for gait speed were fit per outcome with post hoc corrections applied to significant models. RESULTS: Yaw plane head turn speed and amplitude were significantly less in the VSR group compared to HC. Pitch plane head turn amplitude was significantly smaller in PwMS compared to HC (p = 0.04), however pitch plane speed did not differ between the groups. There was no difference between PwMS and the VSR group in yaw or pitch plane speed and amplitude. Both PwMS and the VSR group turned significantly slower than HC during the 180d body turn as measured at the head and trunk (head speed model p = 0.009 and <0.001; trunk speed model p < 0.001 for both groups) however the MS and VSR groups did not differ from each other. SIGNIFICANCE: Turning kinematics while walking in PwMS are altered compared to HC and are similar to individuals with unilateral vestibular hypofunction. Centrally mediated vestibular dysfunction in PwMS may alter movement kinematics and should be considered during examination and treatment.

Multiple Sclerosis , Humans , Multiple Sclerosis/complications , Biomechanical Phenomena/physiology , Postural Balance/physiology , Walking/physiology , Movement
Exp Brain Res ; 241(9): 2261-2273, 2023 Sep.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37552270

INTRODUCTION: Postural control is of utmost importance for human functioning. Cervical proprioception is crucial for balance control. Therefore, any change to it can lead to balance problems. Previous studies used neck vibration to change cervical proprioception and showed changes in postural control, but it remains unknown which vibration frequency or location causes the most significant effect. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the effect of different vibration frequencies and locations on postural sway and to serve as future research protocol guidance. METHODS: Seventeen healthy young participants were included in the study. We compared postural sway without vibration to postural sway with six different combinations of vibration frequency (80, 100, and 150 Hz) and location (dorsal neck muscles and sternocleidomastoid). Postural sway was evaluated using a force platform. The mean center of pressure (CoP) displacement, the root mean square (RMS), and the mean velocity in the anteroposterior and mediolateral direction were calculated, as well as the sway area. The aligned rank transform tool and a three-way repeated measures ANOVA were used to identify significant differences in postural sway variables. RESULTS: Neck vibration caused a significant increase in all postural sway variables (p < 0.001). Neither the vibration frequency (p > 0.34) nor location (p > 0.29) nor the interaction of both (p > 0.30) influenced the magnitude of the change in postural sway measured during vibration. CONCLUSION: Neck muscle vibration significantly changes CoP displacement, mean velocity, RMS, and area. However, we investigated and found that there were no significant differences between the different combinations of vibration frequency and location.

Neck Muscles , Vibration , Humans , Cross-Sectional Studies , Postural Balance/physiology , Proprioception/physiology
J Neuroeng Rehabil ; 20(1): 99, 2023 08 02.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37528430

BACKGROUND: Balance disorders in patients diagnosed with Parkinson's disease (PD) are associated with a change in balance-keeping strategy and reflex disorders which regulate the maintenance of vertical body posture. Center of foot pressure (COP) displacement signals were analyzed during quiet standing experiments to define such changes. The research aimed to apply stock exchange indices based on the trend change analyses to the assessment of a level of the Parkinson disease progression on the grounds of the analysis of the COP signals. METHODS: 30 patients in two stages of PD, 40 elderly participants, and 20 individuals at a young age were studied. Each person was subjected to 3 measurements with open and closed eyes. A technical analysis of the COP displacement signal was performed, and the following quantities were determined: indices related to the number of trend changes (TCI), indices defining a mean time (TCI_dT), and mean displacement (TCI_dS) and mean velocity (TCI_dV) between such changes. RESULTS: The results indicate a higher TCI value for PD than for aged-matched control group (p < 0.05). In the case of PD patients, there was also an increase in the TCI_dS value by 2-5 mm, which mainly contributed to the increase in TCI_dV. Statistically significant differences for the TCI_dT values occurred between all groups in which differences in the average COP velocity were noted. CONCLUSIONS: The TCI and TCI_dV results obtained for the healthy participants enabled the development of indices supporting PD diagnostics. The causes of the TCI_dV changes in patients were determined, i.e., whether they resulted from an increase in the TCI_dT or TCI_dS between the moments of trend changes indicated by the developed algorithm. The developed methodology provides new information on the impact of PD on the strategy of maintaining balance, which was impossible to obtain using currently used analyses. Trial registration The conducted research is an observational study and does not include a health care intervention. Participants gave their consent to participate in the research and the procedure was approved by the Institutional Bioethics Committee.

Parkinson Disease , Aged , Humans , Parkinson Disease/complications , Postural Balance/physiology , Posture/physiology , Standing Position , Foot
Med Sci Monit ; 29: e941398, 2023 Aug 11.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37563808

BACKGROUND This study aimed to identify the immediate effect of applying ankle mobilization to the elderly with chronic ankle instability on the range of joint motion, balance, and lower extremity muscle activity. MATERIAL AND METHODS This study, the Cumberland Ankle Instability Tool (CAIT) was used to evaluate chronic ankle instability, and as a result, 65-year-olds with a score of 24 or less were conducted. In this study, the grade III of Maitland mobilization was used to increase the range of joint motion in older people with chronic ankle instability. And four joint mobilizations were administered for a total of 40 minutes, 10 minutes per run. In the pre-examination, the range of motion of ankle joints, balance, and lower extremity muscle activity in the Limit of Stability (LOS) position prior to ankle mobilization. The reexamination was taken a right after the intervention to see the immediate effect of applying joint mobilization. This study was conducted after receiving the approval of the Institutional Review Board of the Korea National University of Transportation. RESULTS The study results show that, as a result of applying the ankle mobilization intervention, the range of dorsi flexor and plantar flexor motion increased, resulting in the improvement of balance and an immediate effect on the lower extremity muscle activity when measuring the Limit of Stability. CONCLUSIONS The conclusion of this study is ankle mobilization may be a useful intervention method in preventing falls and improving balance in older adults with chronic ankle instability.

Ankle , Joint Instability , Humans , Aged , Ankle Joint , Postural Balance/physiology , Range of Motion, Articular/physiology , Muscles
Gait Posture ; 105: 110-116, 2023 09.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37541088

BACKGROUND: Children with cerebral palsy (CP) make smaller medio-lateral anticipatory postural adjustments (APAs) than typically developing peers when stepping forward to a medial target. They are also less accurate at reaching the stepping target. The Next Step test involves the biomechanical measurement of APAs and foot placement error. These may be useful outcome measures to evaluate dynamic balance in a clinical trial. The reliability of the measures must be assessed to establish their reliability as research tools. RESEARCH QUESTION: What is the inter-rater and intra-rater reliability of stepping accuracy and measures of APAs made by children prior to taking a step? METHODS: Typically developing (TD) (n = 14) or children with CP (n = 16) were recruited from local clinics. Children stepped to electro-luminescent targets placed medially and laterally to each foot. Stepping responses were measured using a force plate and 3D motion analysis of markers placed on the feet and pelvis. The APA was defined as the movement of the centre of pressure (COP) and the centre of mass (COM) estimated via pelvic markers, prior to lifting the lead leg. Stepping accuracy was defined as the absolute distance between the target and end foot position. Participants undertook two data collection sessions separated by at least one week. In session one, the test was measured by rater 1 who repeated this in session two, along with another data collection by a rater 2 or rater 3, after a rest period. Where data were normally distributed, they were assessed for inter-rater and intra-rater reliability using an intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC) and Bland-Altman plots. The standard error of measurement was calculated to determine the minimum difference needed to detect true change. RESULTS: There was no between-group differences in group characteristics (age, weight, height) or in stepping velocity. We found good to excellent reliability when measuring the amplitude and velocity of medio-lateral APAs (ICC range 0.73-0.89). The reliability of antero-posterior APAs was more variable (ICC range 0.08-0.92). The minimum difference to detect a true change for peak medio-lateral motion of COP ranges from 23.7 mm to 29.6 mm and for peak velocity of medio-lateral COM estimate 41-61.9 mm. Stepping accuracy was not normally distributed. SIGNIFICANCE: The Next Step test is a reliable measure of dynamic balance. The peak medio-lateral motion of the COP and medio-lateral velocity of the COM estimate are reliable when measured during a constrained stepping task in ambulant children with cerebral palsy.

Cerebral Palsy , Humans , Child , Exercise Test , Reproducibility of Results , Postural Balance/physiology , Movement/physiology
J Neuromuscul Dis ; 10(5): 963-976, 2023.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37545258

BACKGROUND: The late-onset form of Pompe disease (LOPD) is characterized by muscle weakness, locomotor limitations and a risk of falls. The mechanisms responsible for altered locomotion in adults with LOPD are unknown. The identification of clinical biomarkers is essential for clinical follow-up and research. OBJECTIVES: To identify muscle determinants of impaired locomotor performance, gait stability and gait pattern, and biomechanical determinants of falls in adults with LOPD. METHODS: In this cross-sectional, case-control study, LOPD and control participants underwent 3D gait analysis, locomotor performance tests and muscle strength measurements (isokinetic dynamometer). We explored the muscular determinants of locomotor performance (gait speed, 6-minute walk test distance and timed up and go test), gait stability (spatiotemporal gait variables) and the gait pattern. We also explored biomechanical gait determinants of falls. After intergroup comparisons, determinants were sought to use forward stepwise multiple regression. RESULTS: Eighteen participants with LOPD and 20 control participants were included. Locomotor performance, gait stability, and the gait pattern were significantly altered in LOPD compared to control participants. Hip abductor strength was the main common determinant of locomotor performance, gait stability and pelvic instability. Hip flexor strength was the main determinant of abnormal gait kinematics at the hip and knee. Percentage duration of single support phase during the gait cycle was the main determinant of falls. CONCLUSIONS: Hip abductor strength and percentage duration of single support during gait were the major determinants of locomotor performance, gait stability, falls and the gait pattern in LOPD. These new clinical biomarkers should therefore be systematically assessed using instrumented tools to improve the follow-up of adults with LOPD. They should also be considered in future studies to accurately assess the effects of new therapies. Hip abductor strength and single support phase should also be priority targets for rehabilitation.

Glycogen Storage Disease Type II , Humans , Adult , Glycogen Storage Disease Type II/complications , Glycogen Storage Disease Type II/diagnosis , Postural Balance/physiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Case-Control Studies , Time and Motion Studies , Biomarkers , Locomotion
Geriatr Gerontol Int ; 23(8): 603-608, 2023 Aug.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37427829

AIM: Dysphagia is a problem typically associated with aging. The aim was to investigate the relationship between dysphagia and motor function using a simple assessment method that can be performed in the community setting, and to promote the early detection and prevention of dysphagia. METHODS: Data from the Locomotive Syndrome and Health Outcome in Aizu Cohort Study (LOHAS) were used. Those aged ≥65 years were included. Motor function was assessed using a grip strength test, single limb standing test (SLS), and timed up and go test (TUG). Swallowing function was assessed using the Japanese version of the 10-item Eating Assessment Tool (EAT-10). The association between motor function and swallowing function was analyzed. RESULTS: In total, 1732 participants were included. In logistic regression modes in which grip strength, SLS, and TUG results were included separately, the odds ratio for dysphagia increased by 1.08 (P = 0.001) for each 1-kg decrease in grip strength, and increased by 1.15 (P < 0.001) for each 1-s increase in TUG time. No association was found for SLS. In the model in which grip strength and TUG were included simultaneously, the odds ratio for dysphagia increased by 1.06 (P = 0.01) in grip strength, and increased by 1.11 (P = 0.009) in TUG time. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that skeletal muscle strength and dynamic balance function are associated with dysphagia in community-dwelling older people. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2023; 23: 603-608.

Deglutition Disorders , Independent Living , Humans , Aged , Deglutition Disorders/diagnosis , Cohort Studies , Postural Balance/physiology , Time and Motion Studies , Geriatric Assessment/methods
Sensors (Basel) ; 23(13)2023 Jul 06.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37448051

The translation of the base of support represents a promising approach for the objective assessment of dynamic balance control. Therefore, this study aimed to present a servo-controlled, electrically driven movable plate and a new set of parameters based on the center-of-pressure (CoP) trajectory. Twenty subjects were assessed on a force platform screwed over a movable plate that could combine the following settings: direction (forward (FW) and backward (BW)), displacement (25 mm, 50 mm, and 100 mm), and ramp rate (100 mm/s and 200 mm/s). The subjects underwent two sets of 12 trials randomly combining the plate settings. From the CoP trajectory of the 2.5 s time window after the perturbation, the 95% confidence-interval ellipse (Area95) and the CoP mean velocity (Unit Path) were calculated. Within the same time window, the first peak (FP), the maximal oscillations (ΔCoPMax), and the standard deviation (PPV) of the CoP anterior-posterior trajectory were calculated. The plate direction (p < 0.01), ramp rate (p < 0.001), and displacement (p < 0.01) affected the Area95, FP, and ΔCoPMax, while the Unit Path and PPV were influenced only by the ramp rate (p < 0.001) and displacement (p < 0.001). The servo-controlled, electrically driven movable plate and the CoP-related parameters presented in this study represent a new promising objective tool for dynamic balance assessment.

Postural Balance , Humans , Postural Balance/physiology
Sports Med Arthrosc Rev ; 31(2): 41-48, 2023 Jun 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37418173

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of virtual reality (VR) in balance training for the prevention of falls in older adults. METHODS: We included studies with experimental designs, cohort studies, and quasi-experimental studies of older adults who underwent balance training associated with the use of VR for the prevention of falls. The comparison of control and intervention groups in the studies reported statistically significant improvements in terms of balance for VR. RESULTS: The effects and benefits from the use of VR were seen by the fourth week of intervention, with significant improvements in balance and lower fall rates, the improvements became greater for groups using VR. CONCLUSIONS: The benefits presented by the studies were related not only to balance but also to fear of falling, reaction time, gait, physical fitness, independence in activities of daily living, muscle strength, and even quality of life.

Accidental Falls , Virtual Reality , Humans , Aged , Accidental Falls/prevention & control , Activities of Daily Living , Quality of Life , Fear , Postural Balance/physiology
BMC Musculoskelet Disord ; 24(1): 547, 2023 Jul 04.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37403076

BACKGROUND & PURPOSE: Afferent input from the sole affects postural stability. Cutaneous reflexes from the foot are important to posture and gait. Lower-limb afferents alone provide enough information to maintain upright stance and are critical in perceiving postural sway. Altered feedback from propreoceptive receptors alters gait and patterns of muscle activation. The position and posture of the foot and ankle may also play an important role in proprioceptive input.Therefore, the current research aims to compare static balance and ankle and knee proprioception in people with and without flexible flatfeet. METHODOLOGY: 91 female students between the ages of 18 and 25 voluntarily participated in this study, of which 24 were in the flexible flatfoot group and 67 were in the regular foot group after evaluating the longitudinal arch of the foot. The position sense of ankle and knee joints were measured using the active reconstruction test of the ankle and knee angle; Static balance was measured using the Sharpened Romberg test. Data were non-normally distributed. Accordingly, non-parametric tests were applied. The Kruskal-Wallis test was applied to compare differences between groups in variables. RESULT: Kruskal-Wallis test showed a significant difference between two groups of flat feet and normal feet in the variables of static balance and position sense of ankle plantarflexion, ankle dorsiflexion, and knee flexion (p ≤ 0.05). A significant correlation was found between static balance and sense of ankle and knee position in the group with normal feet. The analysis of the regression line also showed that ankle and knee position sense could predict the static balance score in the regular foot group (ankle dorsiflexion position sense 17% (R2 = 0.17), ankle plantarflexion position sense 17% (R2 = 0.17) and knee flexion position sense 46% (R2 = 0.46) explain of changes in static balance). DISCUSSION & CONCLUSION: Flexible flatfoot soles can cause loss of balance and sense of joint position; therefore, according to this preliminary study, clinicians must be aware and should take into account this possible deficit in the management of these patients.

Ankle , Flatfoot , Humans , Female , Adolescent , Young Adult , Adult , Ankle/physiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Ankle Joint , Knee Joint/physiology , Proprioception/physiology , Posture/physiology , Postural Balance/physiology
Sensors (Basel) ; 23(14)2023 Jul 20.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37514860

Falls in older people are a major health concern as the leading cause of disability and the second most common cause of accidental death. We developed a rapid fall risk assessment based on a combination of physical performance measurements made with an inertial sensor embedded in a smartphone. This study aimed to evaluate and validate the reliability and accuracy of an easy-to-use smartphone fall risk assessment by comparing it with the Physiological Profile Assessment (PPA) results. Sixty-five participants older than 55 performed a variation of the Timed Up and Go test using smartphone sensors. Balance and gait parameters were calculated, and their reliability was assessed by the (ICC) and compared with the PPAs. Since the PPA allows classification into six levels of fall risk, the data obtained from the smartphone assessment were categorised into six equivalent levels using different parametric and nonparametric classifier models with neural networks. The F1 score and geometric mean of each model were also calculated. All selected parameters showed ICCs around 0.9. The best classifier, in terms of accuracy, was the nonparametric mixed input data model with a 100% success rate in the classification category. In conclusion, fall risk can be reliably assessed using a simple, fast smartphone protocol that allows accurate fall risk classification among older people and can be a useful screening tool in clinical settings.

Accidental Falls , Smartphone , Humans , Aged , Accidental Falls/prevention & control , Postural Balance/physiology , Reproducibility of Results , Time and Motion Studies , Risk Assessment/methods
Behav Brain Res ; 452: 114581, 2023 08 24.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37453515

BACKGROUND: Balance impairments in people with Parkinson's disease (PD) demonstrated mainly in challenging postural tasks, such as increased body oscillation may be attributed to the deficits in the brain structures functionality involved in postural control (e.g., motor cortex, midbrain, and brainstem). Although promising results, the effect of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on postural control in people with PD is unclear, especially in objective measures such as the center of pressure (CoP) parameters. Thus, we analyzed the effects of a single session of tDCS on the CoP parameters during the adapted tandem position in people with PD. METHODS: Nineteen people with PD participated in this crossover, randomized, and double-blind study. Anodal tDCS was applied over the primary motor cortex in two conditions of stimulation (2 mA/active and sham) on two different days for 20 min immediately before the postural control evaluation. Participants remained standing in an adapted tandem position for the postural control assessment for 30 s (three trials). CoP parameters were acquired by a force plate. RESULTS: No significant differences were demonstrated between stimulation conditions (p-value range = 0.15-0.89). CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggested that a single session of tDCS with 2 mA does not improve the postural control of people with PD during adapted tandem.

Parkinson Disease , Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation , Humans , Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation/methods , Pilot Projects , Parkinson Disease/therapy , Postural Balance/physiology , Double-Blind Method
J Biomech ; 157: 111703, 2023 08.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37451207

Stepping strategies following external perturbations from different directions is investigated in this work. We analysed the effect of the perturbation angle as well as the level of awareness of individuals and characterised steps out of the sagittal plane between Loaded Side Steps (LSS), Unloaded Medial Steps (UMS) and Unloaded Crossover Steps (UCS). A novel experimental paradigm involving perturbations in different directions was performed on a group of 21 young adults (10 females, 11 males, 20-38 years). Participants underwent 30 randomised perturbations along 5 different angles with different levels of awareness of the upcoming perturbations (with and without wearing a sensory impairment device) for a total of 1260 recorded trials. Results showed that logistic models based on the minimal values of the Margin of Stability (MoS) or on the minimal values of the Time to boundary (Ttb) performed the best in the sagittal plane. However, their accuracy stayed above 79% regardless of the perturbation angle or level of awareness. Regarding the effect of the experimental condition, evidences of different balance recovery behaviours due to the variation of perturbation angles were exposed, but no significant effect of the level of awareness was observed. Finally, we proposed the Distance to Foot boundary (DtFb) as a relevant quantity to characterise the stepping strategies in response to perturbations out of the sagittal plane.

Foot , Postural Balance , Female , Humans , Male , Young Adult , Biomechanical Phenomena , Foot/physiology , Postural Balance/physiology , Adult
J Biomech ; 157: 111731, 2023 08.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37494856

Individuals with neuromuscular deficits often walk with wider step widths compared to healthy adults. Wider steps have been linked to a higher destabilizing frontal-plane external moment and greater range of frontal-plane whole-body angular momentum (HR), which is an indicator of decreased balance control. The purpose of this study was to experimentally determine 1) how step width alters balance control during steady-state walking, and 2) if step width changes the balance response strategies following mediolateral surface perturbations in healthy adults. Fifteen healthy young adults (7 male, age: 25 ± 4 years) walked on an instrumented treadmill at narrow, self-selected, wide and extra-wide step widths. During perturbed trials, the treadmill provided random mediolateral surface translations to each foot midway through single-leg-stance. Muscle electromyography, biomechanical measures (HR, frontal-plane external moment and joint moments) and deviations (differences in these measures between the perturbed and unperturbed walking trials) were compared across step widths. During steady state walking, wider steps were associated with decreased balance control. Increasing step widths were also associated with increased gluteus medius activity and reduced hip abduction and ankle inversion moments, which suggests healthy subjects rely more on a lateral ankle strategy to maintain balance at increasing step widths. There was no change in the plantarflexion moment. During perturbed walking, lateral, but not medial, surface translations adversely affected balance control. Further, wider steps did not change the balance response strategies following the perturbations, which suggests healthy individuals have the capacity to respond similarly to the perturbations at different step widths.

Gait , Postural Balance , Adult , Humans , Male , Young Adult , Biomechanical Phenomena , Buttocks , Foot/physiology , Gait/physiology , Postural Balance/physiology , Walking/physiology , Female
J Biomech ; 157: 111737, 2023 08.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37499431

Although reactive arm motions are important in recovering from a slip event, the biomechanical influences of upper extremity motions during slipping are not clear. The purpose of the current study was to determine whether reactive arm motions during slip recovery leads to increased margins of stability (MoS), and decreased center of mass (CoM) velocity and excursion. Thirty-two participants were randomized into 2 conditions: arms free and arms constrained. Participants traversed a 10-meter walkway and were exposed to an unexpected slip while wearing a protective harness. Anterior-posterior and medial-lateral MoS, as well as the CoM excursion and velocity during the slip perturbation was quantified using a three-dimensional motion capture system. In the frontal plane, individuals with their arms unconstrained demonstrated greater MoS (0.06 ± 0.03 vs -0.01 ± 0.02 m, p < 0.01), decreased CoM excursion (0.05 ± 0.02 vs 0.08 ± 0.01 m, p = 0.015), and a reduced CoM velocity (0.07 ± 0.03 vs. 0.14 ± 0.02 m/s, p < 0.01) compared to individuals with their arms constrained. In the sagittal plane, individuals with their arms unconstrained demonstrated, decreased CoM excursion (0.83 ± 0.13 vs 1.14 ± 0.20 m, p < 0.01) reduced CoM velocity (1.71 ± 0.08 vs. 1.79 ± 0.07 m/s, p = 0.02), but no differences in margins of stability (0.89 ± 0.13 vs 0.94 ± 0.10 m, p = 0.32). Our findings demonstrate that arm motions during a slip perturbation act to restore balance by minimizing displacement and velocity of the body CoM during a slip event in the frontal plane.

Arm , Gait , Humans , Gait/physiology , Arm/physiology , Postural Balance/physiology , Biomechanical Phenomena , Motion , Walking/physiology
Neuroscience ; 527: 11-21, 2023 Sep 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37437799

Age modifies walking balance and neuromuscular control. Cognitive and postural constraints can increase walking balance difficulty and magnify age-related differences. However, how such challenges affect neuromuscular control remains unknown. We determined the effects of age, cognitive task, and arm position on neuromuscular control of walking balance. Young (YA) and older adults (OA) walked on a 6-cm wide beam with and without arm crossing and a cognitive task. Walking balance was quantified by the distance walked on the beam. We also computed step speed, margin of stability, and cognitive errors. Neuromuscular control was determined through muscle synergies extracted from 13 right leg and trunk muscles. We analyzed neuromuscular complexity by the number of synergies and the variance accounted for by the first synergy, coactivity by the number of significantly active muscles in each synergy, and efficiency by the sum of the activation of each significantly active muscle in each synergy. OA vs. YA walked a 14% shorter distance, made 12 times more cognitive errors, and showed less complex and efficient neuromuscular control. Cognitive task reduced walking balance mainly in OA. Decreases in step speed and margin of stability, along with increased muscle synergy coactivity and reduced efficiency were observed in both age groups. Arm-crossing also reduced walking balance mostly in OA, but step speed decreased mainly in YA, in whom the margin of stability increased. Arm-crossing reduced the complexity of synergies. Age, cognitive task, and arm position affect differently muscle synergy recruitment but have similar effects on walking balance.

Arm , Postural Balance , Postural Balance/physiology , Walking/physiology , Muscle, Skeletal/physiology , Cognition , Gait/physiology
Gait Posture ; 105: 1-5, 2023 09.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37451033

BACKGROUND: Control of postural adjustments requires tight regulation of the spinal alignments. Sagittal imbalance may cause balance impairment and proprioceptive decline in older adults. However, the evidence on the proprioceptive mechanisms is limited, although it is known that poor proprioceptive inputs may induce spinal deformities. Thus, this study aimed to measure proprioceptive control quantifiers in older adults with sagittal imbalance to clarify the characteristic postural adjustments during proprioceptive inputs. RESEARCH QUESTION: What are the specific proprioceptive postural adjustments required to maintain balance in older adult patients with lumbar spondylosis? METHODS: This was a cross-sectional, observational study. The participants were classified according to the sagittal vertical axis (SVA) lengths with 50 mm as the cut-off value. The pressure displacement center was determined in 36 patients without sagittal imbalance and 68 patients with sagittal imbalance during an upright stance on a balance board with eyes closed. Vibratory stimulations of 27-272 Hz were applied to the gastrocnemius (GS) and lumbar multifidus (LM) muscles to measure the relative contributions and center of pressures of different relative proprioceptive weighting ratios (RPWs) used on postural adjustments. RESULTS: The RPWs of older adults with sagittal imbalance were higher than that in those without sagittal imbalance (56-100 Hz; p = 0.013). Logistic regression analysis showed that older patients with sagittal imbalance had a significant ankle proprioception control of advantage (odds ratio: 1.1, 95% confidence interval: 1.01-1.1, p = 0.012). SIGNIFICANCE: In older patients with sagittal imbalance, the reliance on hip strategy during balance control (RPW 56-100 Hz) decreases. A quantitative assessment of postural stability during proprioceptive inputs is crucial to identify dependence on proprioception signals, including postural strategy, in older patients with sagittal imbalance. Interventions to improve proprioception can improve the postural stability and strategy of older patients with sagittal imbalance.

Postural Balance , Proprioception , Humans , Aged , Postural Balance/physiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Proprioception/physiology , Muscle, Skeletal/physiology , Ankle/physiology
Exp Gerontol ; 180: 112259, 2023 09.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37473970

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to prospectively investigate the relationship between new falls and the balancing ability of older adults aged ≥80 years who are independent and evaluate the validity of the assessment tools as a predictor of falls. METHODS: We enrolled a total of 160 participants (104 males and 56 females) aged 80 years or older. During the 12 months of observation, we investigated underlying diseases and drug use and performed a comprehensive geriatric assessment (including self-care ability, muscle strength, action ability, cognition, emotional state, and other aspects), as well as computerized dynamic posturography to assess balance and gait functions. We further analyzed the relationship between new falls and multiple internal risk factors. RESULTS: A total of 159 participants were included for statistical analysis, and there were 108 new falls among the 59 participants. Fall history and visual preference (PREF) scores on the sensory integration test showed a positive correlation with new falls. The composite equilibrium score (SOTcom), left total hip bone mineral density, left directional control, and end point deviation were all found to be negatively correlated with new falls (P < 0.05). The cut-off point of the timed "up and go" test (TUG) in predicting new falls in this cohort was >12.03 s, with a sensitivity of 78.0 %, a specificity of 51.5 %, and an AUC of 0.667 (P < 0.001, 95 % CI: 0.567-0.721). The cut-off point of SOTcom in predicting new falls was ≤52, with a sensitivity of 40.7 %, a specificity of 84.0 %, and an AUC of 0.606 (P = 0.028, 95 % CI: 0.525-0.682). CONCLUSIONS: The decline of balance sensory input function (mainly vestibular and visual sense), skeletal muscle motor function, and related postural control ability constituted the main risk factors for new falls in older adults who were independent. The combined use of TUG and SOT was useful in further improving the accuracy of predicting new falls in this population and providing a direction for effective intervention and rehabilitation measures.

Geriatric Assessment , Physical Therapy Modalities , Male , Aged , Female , Humans , Prospective Studies , Risk Factors , Gait , Postural Balance/physiology
Brain Cogn ; 171: 106063, 2023 10.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-37523831

Improving postural control in older adults is necessary for reducing fall risk, and prefrontal cortex activation may also play a role. We sought to examine the impact of exercise interventions on postural control and prefrontal cortex activation during standing balance tasks. We hypothesized that balance would improve and prefrontal control would be reduced. We assessed a subset of participants enrolled in a randomized trial of two exercise interventions. Both groups completed strength and endurance training and the experimental treatment arm included training on timing and coordination of stepping. Postural control and prefrontal cortex activation were measured during dual-task standing balance tasks before and after the intervention. Eighteen participants in the standard strengthening and mobility training arm and 16 in the timing and coordination training arm were included. We examined pre- to post-intervention changes within each study arm, and compared them between interventions. Results did not show any pre- to post-intervention changes on standing postural control nor prefrontal cortex activation in either arm. In addition, there were no differences between the two intervention arms in either balance or prefrontal activation. While exercise interventions can improve mobility, we do not demonstrate evidence of improved standing balance or prefrontal control in standing.

Exercise Therapy , Prefrontal Cortex , Aged , Humans , Postural Balance/physiology