Deterioration of physical and psychological health is an important issue in older adults aged 65 years or more. This study aimed to determine whether a virtual kayak paddling (VKP) exercise could improve postural balance, muscle performance, and cognitive function in older adults with mild cognitive impairment. Sixty participants were randomly assigned to the VKP (n = 30) or control group (n = 30). Participants in the VKP group performed the paddling exercise in a virtual environment for 60 min twice a week for 6 weeks, whereas those in the control group performed home exercises. Postural balance (p < .05), muscle performance (p < .05), and cognitive function (p < .05) were significantly improved in the VKP group and were superior to those in the control group (p < .05). Thus, the findings indicate that VKP exercise improves postural balance, muscle performance, and cognitive function in older adults with mild cognitive impairment.
Yongwoo Lee, Wonjae Choi, Kyeongjin Lee, Changho Song and Seungwon Lee
Avatar-based three-dimensional technology is a new approach to improve physical function in older adults. The aim of this study was to use three-dimensional video gaming technology in virtual reality training to improve postural balance and lower extremity strength in a population of community-dwelling older adults. The experimental group participated in the virtual reality training program for 60 min, twice a week, for 6 weeks. Both experimental and control groups were given three times for falls prevention education at the first, third, and fifth weeks. The experimental group showed significant improvements not only in static and dynamic postural balance but also lower extremity strength (p < .05). Furthermore, the experimental group was improved to overall parameters compared with the control group (p < .05). Therefore, three-dimensional video gaming technology might be beneficial for improving postural balance and lower extremity strength in community-dwelling older adults.