Physical activity is known to have beneficial effects on a host of factors related to physical and mental health, and positively affects postural control. However, there is no agreement on which measures of postural control and to what extent they are dependent on the past and present physical activity in older adults. To answer this question we compared the postural performance in a 20-s quiet stance with eyes open on a Kistler force plate in 38 subjects, aged 60–92, who were formerly and are currently physically active (AA) with those who were always inactive (II) and those who were either formerly (AI) or are currently (IA) active. Results indicated that only current activity promoted better postural control while former activity was ineffective. Postural control in AA and IA was very similar and much better than in II and AI who, in contrast, displayed similarly deteriorated postural control.
Wojciechowska-Maszkowska, Borzucka, Rogowska, and Kuczyński are with the Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy, Opole University of Technology, Poland.