Phys. Ther. Korea 2021; 28(2): 154-160
Published online May 20, 2021
© Korean Research Society of Physical Therapy
Injury Prevention and Biomechanics Laboratory, Department of Physical Therapy, Yonsei University, Wonju, Korea
Background: Theoretically, balance is affected by the height of center of mass (COM) during quiet standing. However, no one examined this in humans with variables derived from the center of pressure (COP).
Objects: We have conducted balance experiment to measure COP data during quiet standing, in order to examine how the COP measures were affected by the height of COM, vision, floor conditions, and gender.
Methods: Twenty individuals stood still with feet together and arms at sides for 30 seconds on a force plate. Trials were acquired with three COM heights: 1% increased or decreased, and not changed, with two vision conditions: eyes closed (EC) and eyes open (EO), and with two floor conditions: unstable (foam pad) and stable (force plate) floor. Outcome variables included the mean distance, root mean square distance, total excursion, mean velocity, and 95% confidence circle area.
Results: All outcome variables were associated with the COM height (p < 0.0005), vision (p < 0.0005), and floor condition (p < 0.003). The mean velocity and 95% confidence circle area were 5.7% and 21.8% greater, respectively, in raised COM than in lowered COM (24.6 versus 23.2 mm/s; 1,013.4 versus 832.3 mm2). However, there were no interactions between the COM height and vision condition (p > 0.096), and between the COM height and floor condition (p > 0.183) for all outcome variables. Furthermore, there was no gender difference in all outcome variables (p > 0.186).
Conclusion: Balance was affected by the change of COM height induced by a weight belt in human. However, the effect was not affected by vision or floor condition. Our results should inform the design of balance exercise program to improve the outcome of the balance training.
Keywords: Balance, Center of mass, Center of pressure, Quiet standing