The Effects of the Pilates Training Method on Balance and Falls of Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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Exercising with the Pilates method may be a beneficial treatment to improve balance and decrease the number of falls. To ascertain this, our search in 7 databases included 15 randomized controlled trials in which Pilates was the primary intervention. Participants were over 60 years of age; the outcomes were related to balance and falls. The Cochrane tool and PEDro scale were used to assess risk of bias and quality of individual studies. Current evidence supported the view that exercising with the Pilates method improves the balance of older adults with a high practical effect in terms of the dynamic (SMD = 0.75 [0.17;1.32]), static (SMD = 1.33 [0.53;2.13]), and overall balance (SMD = 0.96[0.00;1.91]). Pilates also produced greater improvements with a moderate effect in terms of the dynamic (SMD = 0.37[−0.36;1.11]) and overall balance (SMD = 0.58[0.19;0.96]) compared to other training approaches oriented to the same end. Literature evaluating the effects on falls is scarce, and results were not conclusive.

Moreno-Segura, Igual-Camacho, Ballester-Gil, Blasco-Igual, and Blasco are with the Faculty of Physiotherapy, University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain.

Address author correspondence to Jose María Blasco at jose.maria.blasco@uv.es.
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