The Effects of Dual Task on Healthy Adults Balance Index in Age and

Sona Abedi, Sedighe Sadat Naeimi, Abbas Rahimi, Minoo Khalkhali Zavieh, Azadeh Shadmehr



Background and Aim:Falls are the leading cause of accidental death among older adults.

Recent studies have demonstrated that an impaired ability to maintain balance while

simultaneously performing cognitive tasks is associated with increased rates of adverse

outcomes, such as falls in elderly people. Because interventions designed to improve dualtask balance performance have the potential to reduce falling rate and functional decline, they are a critical health care need.

Material & Methods: 60 healthy adults in four equal groups (mean age in: young

men=22.1±1.9, old men =68.3±4.1, young women =22.6±1.8, old women =66.9±2.6) participated in this study. All subjects experienced four test conditions including: single- task with eyes open (O1), single- task with eyes closed (C1), dual-task with eyes open (O2) and dual-task with eyes closed (C2). Postural task in this study included standing on 8 instability level of biodex balance SD machine plate and cognitive task was backward counting by three.

Results:balance index mean in older group was significantly higher in comparison with

young group in all test conditions (O1 P=.000, C1 P=.003, O2 P=.000, C2 P=.000). There are not any significant differences between gender groups balance index mean, in test conditions.In Young women group O2 overall (OL), antroposterior (AP) and mediolateral (ML) balance indexes means were significantly higher than corresponding amounts in C2 (OL P=.014, AP P=.030, ML P=.017). In old women group C2 ML balance index mean was significantly higher than O2 ML balance index mean (P=.034). There are not significant differences between single- and dual-task conditions in other within group comparisons.

Conclusion:In young men, young women and old women balance index means are different and dual eyes closed condition. Older adults balance index in single- and

dual-task conditions is higher than young adults balance index. There is not any difference between men and women balance index in single and dual-task conditions.

Key words:falling, dual task, attention demand, gender difference, age difference.

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