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The Effects of a Chair-Based Pilates Intervention on Postural Balance in Young-Old Adults

His-Yuan Wu, Graduate Institute of Dance, Taipei Physical Education College; I-Tsun Chiang, Graduate Institute of Sports and Health, National Changhua University of Education

The purpose of the study is to understand the effects of a chair-based Pilates program on postural balance in young-old adults. Thirty-two participants aged 60-75 were recruited and divided into experimental and control groups. Utilizing an AMTI force platform, timed up-and-go, open- and closed-eye two leg stand, functional reach test, and "rolling like a ball" movements were performed to measure center of pressure (COP) displacement, medial-lateral COP and anterior- posterior COP. The major intervention was the chair-based Pilates program, which was designed to enhance the core muscle group through sitting posture of vertebral activities.

Participants in the experimental group undertook 60-min chair-based Pilates twice a week for 8 weeks. Pre- and posttests were implemented before and after the intervention in both groups. After 8 weeks of the intervention, the experimental group had the second posttest to examine the withdrawal effect. Independent-sample t test and repeated-measures analysis were used to analyze the data. The results showed that the experimental group had significant improvement on medial-lateral COP (p < .05) and the functional reach test (p < .05). In addition, the second posttest demonstrated significant regression in the experimental group after the intervention withdrawal. The implications of these results suggest that the chair-based Pilates program provides partial benefits in balance and further studies are needed to modify duration, time, and intensity of the chair-based Pilates program and examine the multiple outcomes through a qualitative approach.


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