Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to understand the characteristics of center of force (COF) for elderly adults.
Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to understand the relationships between static balance and risk factors for falls among older people.
The purpose of this study was to describe the characteristics of center of force (COF) for elderly adults and to investigate the relationships between static balance and risk factors for falls among older people.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in this study. Center of force (COF) was computed to evaluate static balance among older people living in community. A foot pressure measurement system (RSscan ® system) was used to collect data of the center of force. Descriptive statistics, Spearman rank order correlations, and analysis of variance were conducted using SPSS 17.0 for windows.
A total of 82 older people were recruited to participate in this study. The participants comprised 22 (26.8%) males and 60 (73.2%) females. The mean age was 72.1 (SD=7.2) years old with the average body weight of 61.8 (SD=9.7) kg. Results showed the center of force was correlated with age. The anterior-posterior sway range was significantly greater than the medial-lateral sway range.
Identifying and managing risk factors are an integral part of the prevention of falls in older people. These characteristics of foot pressure and static balance patterns for elderly adults can provide some useful information for health professionals in developing balance training programs.