To investigate the impact of unilateral balance training on postural control of the trained and contralateral limb in healthy elderly. Fifty-one healthy old adults were randomly assigned into training group (TG) and control group (CG). Participants of the TG performed unilateral balance training (dominant (DOM) leg) over 4 weeks (4×/week). Centre of pressure analysis was performed at baseline, 5 weeks follow-up and 9 weeks follow-up under the following conditions: (1) one-leg stance without additional task, (2) one-leg stance with motor task and (3) one-leg stance with cognitive task. From baseline to 5 weeks follow-up, a mixed analysis of variance detected a significant time × group interaction for the DOM leg (P < 0.05), indicating higher improvement of the TG in comparison to CG. No significant interaction effect was found for the non-DOM leg. Within the TG, the non-DOM leg significantly improved in mean velocity (P = 0.001) and anterior–posterior range (P < 0.001). Unilateral balance training was effective to improve postural control of the trained leg. The effect on the contralateral leg was small and not significant within this study design. Improvements were retained after 4 weeks without training. A tendency is given that unilateral balance training might be beneficial to improve postural control of the contralateral leg.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation