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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The effects of a lower body resistance-training protocol on static balance and well-being in older adult women Rezmovitz, Jeremy Joseph


Studies in the area of balance have shown that the hip girdle musculature is involved in one of the main strategies employed in regaining balance. It has also been shown that 12- week strength training programmes undertaken at any age can show modest improvements in strength and profound effects in functional independence. PURPOSE: To examine the relationship between lower body function in the muscles associated with the hip girdle, static balance and well-being in a 12 week training programme. METHODS : Using a quasi-experimental design, forty-four women aged 70 and older volunteered into the control (n[sub c]=22, Mean Age = 76.10 ± 3.54 (SD)) or training group (n[sub T]=22, Mean Age = 76.16 ± 4.24). Subjects were tested on 2 functional lower body tests; a Timed Two-Legged Squat (TLS) and Timed Chair Stand (TCS). Static balance was assessed using timed platform stability under 3 different conditions with eyes open and closed and well-being was assessed using a self-report questionnaire. Subjects in the training group were allotted to supervised training workouts consisting of 1 hour stretching and strengthening programmes 3x/wk for 12 weeks. Subjects in the control group were asked to maintain their daily routines and not participate in additional activities. RESULTS : Thirty-eight women completed the study (n[sub c]=20, n[sub T] = 18) and a 2x2 ANOVA with repeated measures on one factor demonstrated a statistical significant effect in the TLS (p<0.001), and TCS (p<0.001). As well, of the six conditions tested for balance, only one condition (Eyes closed, psi=4.0) demonstrated a significant difference (p=0.026) between groups. Other statistically significant results were demonstrated only within the training group from weeks 0-6 (p=0.044) in condition B (Eyes open, psi=2.5) and from weeks 6-12 (p=0.019) in condition F (Eyes closed, psi=4.0). Results of the questionnaire from the training group were all positive and suggest that undertaking a strength-training programme can improve one's well-being. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that a lower body resistance training programme can improve lower body function, well-being and static balance. Further research, with larger sample sizes, is warranted to assess the effects on varying aspects of balance under different conditions.

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