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J Sci Med Sport., 2009; 12(4): 440-444, PMID: 18550436

Effects of whole body vibration on postural steadiness in an older population

Year: 2009

Rees SS, Murphy AJ, Watsford ML
Human Performance Laboratory, School of Leisure, Sport and Tourism, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia.


The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of vibration exercise on postural steadiness performance in a healthy, older population. Forty-three healthy, older participants (23 men and 20 women, aged 73.5+/-4.5yr) were randomly assigned to either a vibration group (VIB), an exercise without vibration group (EX) or a control group (CONT). The VIB and EX groups undertook static and dynamic bodyweight exercises three times per week for eight weeks. Static balance was assessed using a one-legged postural steadiness (OLPS) test. This test was performed prior to and immediately after the training period. OLPS improved significantly for the VIB intervention after eight weeks training (p<0.05) compared to the EX and CONT groups. The improvements in OLPS were significantly affected by the baseline values, with the largest changes evident for VIB participants with a poorer initial score (p<0.01). Vibration exercise can contribute to improved static one-legged balance in a healthy, older population. As improvements in OLPS were related to baseline values, vibration exercise as an intervention would appear to serve the most benefit for those that exhibit diminished postural control.

GID: 1359; Last update: 11.07.2008