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Adults with intellectual disabilities (ID) show a greater tendency toward deconditioning and having a sedentary lifestyle than their peers without disabilities. The aim of this study was to characterize sensorimotor deficits through coordination tests and during static and dynamic balance. Eight tasks that involved the integration of hand movements with visual information were used here, as well as the Posture Scale Analyzer system to examine postural stability. During static and dynamic standing tests with the eyes closed, the postural stability of people with ID was accompanied by a small sway rate. In the ID group, the frontal plane movements were significantly larger (p > .05) than the sagittal plane movements. The participants with ID showed a significantly lower score than the control group in all the sensorimotor tests. Our observations on balance and coordination capabilities might have significance for understanding the mechanisms underlying movement dysfunction in adults with ID and offer some new approaches for their possible prevention.
Carmeli is with the Physical Therapy Dept., The Stanley Steyer School of Health Professions, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv 69978, Israel. Bar-Yossef, Ariav, Paz, Sabbag, and Levy are with the Neve-Ram Institute for People with Special Needs, Rechasim, Israel.