Postural Stability of Older Female Scottish Country Dancers in Comparison With Physically Active Controls

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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Physical activity assists older individuals’ functional ability and postural stability. Recently, Scottish country dance (SCD) was reported as being a beneficial form of physical activity for functional ability in older females. This study aims to examine the effect of SCD on postural stability. Scottish country dancers (n = 20) were compared with physically active controls (n = 33) for static postural sway measured on a force platform. The Romberg and Tandem stances were used under ‘eyes open’ and ‘eyes closed’ conditions. Ninety-five percent ellipse area and sway velocity were calculated from the center of pressure displacement. Ninety-five percent ellipse area was the same for both groups in all tests. The control group had greater sway velocity for all tests (P < .01) except Tandem eyes closed. SCD participation resulted in similar postural sway as participation in other physical activities, however nondancers may need a greater amount of regulatory activity to maintain balance.

Dewhurst and Bampouras are with the University of Cumbria, Cumbria, UK. Peacock is with the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK. Address author correspondence to Dr. Susan Dewhurst at susan.dewhurst@cumbia.ac.uk.