To evaluate the effect of aquatic exercise and education on fall risk factors in older adults with hip osteoarthritis (OA).
Seventy-nine adults, 65 years of age or older with hip OA and at least 1 fall risk factor, were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 groups: aquatics and education (AE; aquatic exercise twice a wk with once-a-wk group education), aquatics only (A; 2 wk aquatic exercise) and control (C; usual activity). Balance, falls efficacy, dual-task function, functional performance (chair stands), and walking performance were measured pre- and postintervention or control period.
There was a significant improvement in fall risk factors (full-factorial MANCOVA, baseline values as covariates; p = .038); AE improved in falls efficacy compared with C and in functional performance compared with A and C.
The combination of aquatic exercise and education was effective in improving fall risk factors in older adults with arthritis.
Arnold is with the School of Physical Therapy, and Faulkner, the College of Kinesiology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.