Daily Bicycling in Older Adults May be Effective to Reduce Fall Risks—A Case-Control Study

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
Restricted access

Purchase article

USD $24.95

Student 1 year subscription

USD $76.00

1 year subscription

USD $101.00

Student 2 year subscription

USD $144.00

2 year subscription

USD $189.00

Older adults gain many health benefits from riding bicycles regularly. We aimed to explore whether older persons who ride bicycles regularly have better balance than controls. Balance control and voluntary stepping were assessed in 20 older adults aged 65–85 years who live in an agricultural community village and who ride bicycles regularly, and 30 age- and gender-matched nonbicycle riders (NBR). Self-reported function and fear of fall were also assessed. Bicycle riders (BR) showed significantly better balance, faster voluntary stepping, and better self-reported advanced lower-extremity function compared with NBR. The results might suggest that bicycling regularly preserves balance control and speed of voluntary stepping in older adults because bicycling might maintain specific balance coordination patterns. The results should be treated with caution as bicycle riders were older adults who selected an active lifestyle (i.e., bicycling as well as living in an agricultural village) that may bias the results.

Batcir and Melzer are with the Schwartz Rehabilitation and Movement Analysis Laboratory, Physical Therapy Dept., Recanati School for Community Health Professions, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel.

Address author correspondence to Itshak Melzer at itzikm@bgu.ac.il.
Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
Article Sections
References
  • Alliance for Biking & Walking. (2016). Bicycling and walking in the United States: 2016 benchmarking report. Retrieved from https://www.aarp.org/content/dam/aarp/livable-communities/documents-2016/2016-WalkingBicyclingBenchmarkingReport.pdf

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Anderson-HanleyC.ArcieroP.J.WestenS.C.NimonJ. & ZimmermanE. (2012). Neuropsychological benefits of stationary bike exercise and a cybercycle exergame for older adults with diabetes: An exploratory analysis. Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology 6(4) 849857. PubMed ID: 22920811 doi:10.1177/193229681200600416

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • BerglandA. & WyllerT.B. (2004). Risk factors for serious fall related injury in elderly women living at home. Injury Prevention 10(5) 308313. PubMed ID: 15470013 doi:10.1136/ip.2003.004721

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • BoisgontierM.P.BeetsI.A.DuysensJ.NieuwboerA.KrampeR.T. & SwinnenS.P. (2013). Age-related differences in attentional cost associated with postural dual tasks: Increased recruitment of generic cognitive resources in older adults. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 37(8) 18241837. PubMed ID: 23911924 doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2013.07.014

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • BuchnerD.M.CressM.E.de LateurB.J.EsselmanP.C.MargheritaA.J.PriceR. & WagnerE.H. (1997). A comparison of the effects of three types of endurance training on balance and other fall risk factors in older adults. Aging (Milano) 9(1–2) 112119. PubMed ID: 9177594 doi:10.1007/BF03340136

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • CollinsJ.J. & De LucaC.J. (1993). Open-loop and closed-loop control of posture: A random-walk analysis of center-of-pressure trajectories. Experimental Brain Research 95(2) 308318. PubMed ID: 8224055 doi:10.1007/BF00229788

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • CollinsJ.J.De LucaC.J.BurrowsA. & LipsitzL.A. (1995). Age-related changes in open-loop and closed-loop postural control mechanisms. Experimental Brain Research 104(3) 480492. PubMed ID: 7589299 doi:10.1007/BF00231982

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ConcatoJ.ShahN. & HorwitzR.I. (2000). Randomized, controlled trials, observational studies, and the hierarchy of research designs. New England Journal of Medicine 342(25) 18871892. PubMed ID: 10861325 doi:10.1056/NEJM200006223422507

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • GauchardG.C.GangloffP.JeandelC. & PerrinP.P. (2003). Influence of regular proprioceptive and bioenergetic physical activities on balance control in elderly women. The Journals of Gerontology. Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 58(9) 846850. PubMed ID: 14528042 doi:10.1093/gerona/58.9.M846

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • GillespieL.D.RobertsonM.C.GillespieW.J.SherringtonC.GatesS.ClemsonL.M. & LambS.E. (2012). Interventions for preventing falls in older people living in the community. Cochrane Database of Systemic Reviews (9) CD007146. PubMed ID: 22972103 doi:10.1002/14651858.CD007146.pub3

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HaleyS.M.JetteA.M.CosterW.J.KooyoomijianJ.T.LevensonS.HeerenT. & AshbaJ. (2002). Late life function and disability instrument. II. Development and evaluation of the disability component. Journal of Gerontology. Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 57A209216.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HalvarssonA.FranzénE.OlssonE. & StåhleA. (2012). Relative and absolute reliability of the new “Step-Ex” step-execution test in elderly people with and without balance problems. Disability and Rehabilitation 34(23) 19861992. PubMed ID: 22423976 doi:10.3109/09638288.2012.665129

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HartogJ.J.BoogaardH.NijlandH. & HoekG. (2011). Do the health benefits of cycling outweigh the risks? Cien Saude Colet 16(12) 47314744. Review. Erratum in Cien Saude Colet 2012; 17(3) 809. PubMed ID: 22124913 doi:10.1590/S1413-81232011001300022

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HoweT.E.RochesterL.NeilF.SkeltonD.A. & BallingerC. (2011). Exercise for improving balance in older people. Cochrane Database of Systemic Reviews (11) CD004963. PubMed ID: 22071817 doi:10.1002/14651858.CD004963.pub3

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • HuxholdO.LiS.C.SchmiedekF. & LindenbergerU. (2006). Dual-tasking postural control: Aging and the effects of cognitive demand in conjunction with focus of attention. Brain Research Bulletin 69(3) 294305. PubMed ID: 16564425 doi:10.1016/j.brainresbull.2006.01.002

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ItamarN.SchwartzD. & MelzerI. (2013). Postural control: Differences between youth judokas and swimmers. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 53(5) 483489. PubMed ID: 23903528

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • IzquierdoM.IbáñezJ.HäkkinenK.KraemerW.J.RuestaM. & GorostiagaE.M. (2004). Maximal strength and power, muscle mass, endurance and serum hormones in weightlifters and road cyclists. Journal of Sports Sciences 22(5) 465478. PubMed ID: 15160600 doi:10.1080/02640410410001675342

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • KurzI.OddssonL. & MelzerI. (2013). Characteristics of balance control in older persons who fall with injury—a prospective study. Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology 23(4) 814819. PubMed ID: 23669557 doi:10.1016/j.jelekin.2013.04.001

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • LaughtonC.A.SlavinM.KatdareK.NolanL.BeanJ.F.KerriganD.C.CollinsJ.J. (2003). Aging, muscle activity, and balance control: Physiologic changes associated with balance impairment. Gait and Posture 18(2) 101108. PubMed ID: 14654213 doi:10.1016/S0966-6362(02)00200-X

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • League of American Bicyclists. (2014). WHERE WE RIDE Analysis of bicycle commuting in American cities. Report on 2014 American Community Survey data. Retrieved from http://www.bikeleague.org/sites/default/files/Where_We_Ride_2014_data_web.pdf

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • LionA.GauchardG.C.DeviterneD. & PerrinP.P. (2009). Differentiated influence of off-road and on-road cycling practice on balance control and the related-neurosensory organization. Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology 19(4) 623630. PubMed ID: 18501633 doi:10.1016/j.jelekin.2008.03.008

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • LordS.R.RogersM.W.HowlandA. & FitzpatrickR. (1999). Lateral stability, sensorimotor function and falls in older people. Journal of the American Geriatric Society 47(9) 10771081. PubMed ID: 10484249 doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.1999.tb05230.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MakiB.E.HollidayP.J. & TopperA.K. (1994). A prospective study of postural balance and risk of falling in an ambulatory and independent elderly population. Journal of Gerontology 49(2) M72M84. PubMed ID: 8126355 doi:10.1093/geronj/49.2.M72

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MasonJ.FultonL. & McDonaldZ. (2015). A global high shift cycling scenario the potential for dramatically increasing bicycle and E-bike use in cities around the world with estimated energy CO2 and cost impacts. Retrieved from https://www.itdp.org/a-global-high-shift-cycling-scenario/

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MaylorE.A. & WingA.M. (1996). Age differences in postural stability are increased by additional cognitive demands. The Journals of Gerontology Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 51(3) P143P154. PubMed ID: 8620354 doi:10.1093/geronb/51B.3.P143

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.BenjuyaN. & KaplanskiJ. (2001). Age-related changes of postural control: Effect of cognitive tasks. Gerontology 47(4) 189194. PubMed ID: 11408723 doi:10.1159/000052797

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.BenjuyaN. & KaplanskiJ. (2003). Effects of regular walking on postural stability in the elderly. Gerontology 49(4) 240245. PubMed ID: 12792159 doi:10.1159/000070404

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.BenjuyaN. & KaplanskiJ. (2004). Postural stability in the elderly: A comparison between fallers and non-fallers. Age and Ageing 33(6) 602607. PubMed ID: 15501837 doi:10.1093/ageing/afh218

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.KrasovskyT.OddssonL.I. & LiebermannD.G. (2010). Age-related differences in lower-limb force-time relation during the push-off in rapid voluntary stepping. Clinical Biomechanics (Bristol Avon) 25(10) 989994. PubMed ID: 20724044 doi:10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2010.07.009

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.KurzI. & OddssonL.I. (2010). A retrospective analysis of balance control parameters in elderly fallers and non-fallers. Clinical Biomechanics (Bristol Avon) 25(10) 984988. PubMed ID: 20696509 doi:10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2010.07.007

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.KurzI.ShaharD.LeviM. & OddssonL. (2007). Application of the voluntary step execution test to identify elderly fallers. Age and Ageing 36(5) 532537. PubMed ID: 17545207 doi:10.1093/ageing/afm068

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.KurzI.ShaharD. & OddssonL.I. (2009). Predicting injury from falls in older adults: Comparison of voluntary step reaction times in injured and noninjured fallers—a prospective study. Journal of the American Geriatric Society 57(4) 743745. PubMed ID: 19392971 doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.2009.02198.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI.MarxR. & KurzI. (2009). Regular exercise in the elderly is effective to preserve the speed of voluntary stepping under single-task condition but not under dual-task condition. A case-control study. Gerontology 55(1) 4957. PubMed ID: 18547943 doi:10.1159/000139608

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI. & OddssonL.I. (2004). The effect of a cognitive task on voluntary step execution in healthy elderly and young individuals. Journal of the American Geriatric Society 52(8) 12551262. PubMed ID: 15271111 doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.2004.52353.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MelzerI. & OddssonL.I. (2016). Altered characteristics of balance control in obese older adults. Obesity Research & Clinical Practice 10(2) 151158. PubMed ID: 26092493 doi:10.1016/j.orcp.2015.05.016

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • NadeauA.LunguO.DuchesneC.RobillardM.È.BoreA.BobeufF.DoyonJ. (2017). A 12-week cycling training regimen improves gait and executive functions concomitantly in people with Parkinson’s disease. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 10690. PubMed ID: 28127282 doi:10.3389/fnhum.2016.00690

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • OgilvieD.EganM.HamiltonV. & PetticrewM. (2004). Promoting walking and cycling as an alternative to using cars: Systematic review. British Medical Journal 329(7469) 763766. PubMed ID: 15385407 doi:10.1136/bmj.38216.714560.55

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PereiraC.SilvaR.A.D.de OliveiraM.R.SouzaR.D.N.BorgesR.J. & VieiraE.R. (2017). Effect of body mass index and fat mass on balance force platform measurements during a one-legged stance in older adults. Aging Clinical and Experimental Research 17. PubMed ID: 28681134 doi:10.1007/s40529-017-0796-6

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PerrinP.DeviterneD.HugelF. & PerrotC. (2002). Judo, better than dance, develops sensorimotor adaptabilities involved in balance control. Gait and Posture 15(2) 187194. PubMed ID: 11869913 doi:10.1016/S0966-6362(01)00149-7

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PiirtolaM. & EraP. (2006). Force platform measurements as predictors of falls among older people—a review. Gerontology 52(1) 116. PubMed ID: 16439819 doi:10.1159/000089820

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • PucherJ. & BuehlerR. (2008). Making cycling irresistible: Lessons from The Netherlands, Denmark and Germany. Transplant Reviews 28495528. doi:10.1080/01441640701806612

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RaymakersJ.A.SamsonM.M. & VerhaarH.J. (2005). The assessment of body sway and the choice of the stability parameter(s). Gait and Posture 21(1) 4858. PubMed ID: 15536033 doi:10.1016/j.gaitpost.2003.11.006

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • RisselC.PassmoreE.MasonC. & MeromD. (2013). Two pilot studies of the effect of bicycling on balance and leg strength among older adults. Journal of Environmental and Public Health 201316. PubMed ID: 23690805 doi:10.1155/2013/686412

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • SherringtonC.WhitneyJ.C.LordS.R.HerbertR.D.CummingR.G. & CloseJ.C. (2008). Effective exercise for the prevention of falls: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of the American Geriatric Society 56(12) 22342243. PubMed ID: 19093923 doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.2008.02014.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • SmartN.A.DiebergG. & GiallauriaF. (2013). Functional electrical stimulation for chronic heart failure: A meta-analysis. International Journal of Cardiology 167(1) 8086. PubMed ID: 22236510 doi:10.1016/j.ijcard.2011.12.019

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Van ImpeA.BruijnS.M.CoxonJ.P.WenderothN.SunaertS.DuysensJ. & SwinnenS.P. (2013). Age-related neural correlates of cognitive task performance under increased postural load. Age (Dordrecht Netherlands) 35(6) 21112124. PubMed ID: 23274853 doi:10.1007/s11357-012-9499-2

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • VerneyJ.KadiF.SaafiM.A.Piehl-AulinK. & DenisC. (2006). Combined lower body endurance and upper body resistance training improves performance and health parameters in healthy active elderly. European Journal of Applied Physiology 97(3) 288297. PubMed ID: 16770464 doi:10.1007/s00421-006-0175-z

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • World Health Organisation. (2017). Physical activity. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs385/en/

  • WuG.ZhaoF.ZhouX. & WeiL. (2002). Improvement of isokinetic knee extensor strength and reduction of postural sway in the elderly from long-term Tai Chi exercise. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 83(10) 13641369. PubMed ID: 12370869 doi:10.1053/apmr.2002.34596

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • YardleyL.BeyerN.HauerK.KempenG.Piot-ZieglerC. & ToddC. (2005). Development and initial validation of the Falls Efficacy Scale-International (FES-I). Age and Ageing 34(6) 614619. PubMed ID: 16267188 doi:10.1093/ageing/afi196

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • ZhangJ.G.Ishikawa-TakataK.YamazakiH.MoritaT. & OhtaT. (2008). Postural stability and physical performance in social dancers. Gait and Posture 27(4) 697701. PubMed ID: 17981468 doi:10.1016/j.gaitpost.2007.09.004

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
Article Metrics
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 101 101 32
Full Text Views 26 26 8
PDF Downloads 19 19 4
Altmetric Badge
PubMed
Google Scholar
Cited By