Stability limits, single-leg jump, and body awareness in older Tai Chi practitioners.

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Abstract

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: University-based rehabilitation center. PARTICIPANTS: Tai Chi practitioners (n=24; age+/-SD, 68.5+/-6.6 y) and control subjects (n=20; age, 71.3+/-6.7 y) were recruited. INTERVENTIONS: Not applicable. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Measures included the following: (1) subjects' intentional weight shifting to 8 different spatial positions within their base of support using the limits of stability test, (2) the ability to leave the floor in single-leg jumping and to maintain balance on landing using force platform measurements, and (3) body awareness and movement behaviors using the Body Awareness Scale-Health (BAS-H). RESULTS: The findings showed that Tai Chi practitioners had a significantly better ability to lean further without losing stability and better directional control (P<0.01). They had a better ability to jump off the floor (P<0.05) and to maintain a longer single-leg stance after landing (P<.05) and better overall body awareness (P<.001). The single-leg jumps also correlated significantly with limits of stability measures of movement velocity, endpoint excursions, and maximum excursions but not with directional control. The BAS-H scores correlated significantly with the limits of stability measures except directional control. They also correlated significantly with the ability to jump off the floor and maintain stability after landing. CONCLUSIONS: When compared with healthy controls, Tai Chi practitioners had better stability limits, increased ability to perform a single-leg jump, and more stability in landing on 1 leg as well as better body awareness. Significant correlations among limits of stability measures, single-leg jumping tests, and the BAS-H scores indicate the importance of body awareness in limits of stability, single-leg jumping, and landing.

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  • Other Medical Sciences not elsewhere specified
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-220
JournalArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Volume91
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Division of Physiotherapy (Closed 2012) (013042000)