n International SportMed Journal - The effect of a three-week Wii Fit balance training program on dynamic balance in healthy young adults : original research article
|Article Title||The effect of a three-week Wii Fit balance training program on dynamic balance in healthy young adults : original research article|
|© Publisher:||International Federation of Sports Medicine|
|Journal||International SportMed Journal|
|Affiliations||1 Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada, 2 Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada, 3 Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada and 4 Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada|
|Publication Date||Dec 2012|
|Pages||170 - 179|
|Keyword(s)||Balance, Exergaming, Fall prevention, Star excursion balance test and WiiFit|
Background : Wii Fit is an exergame that purports to improve balance through a variety of balance training exercises. Despite relatively little research documenting the effects of Wii Fit on balance this technology has been implemented in educational and clinical settings, often with the direct goal of balance enhancement.
Research question : The current study examined the effects of three weeks of Wii Fit balance activities on balance in a group of healthy, young adults.
Type of study : quasi-experimental design with pre/post testing of effects of intervention.
Methods : A total of 19 individuals underwent an initial balance assessment using the star excursion balance test (SEBT) followed by a total of 8 balance training sessions using Wii Fit balance activities. At the end of the three-week training period the SEBT was re-administered both immediately following the final Wii training session and again 24 hours later on a subset of 11 participants.
Results : Significant post-training improvements were observed for all SEBT reach directions expect posterolateral and anteromedial. This was interpreted as indicating that dynamic balance had improved in this group of young adults.
Conclusions : Following Wii Fit balance training participants SEBT performance improved in 6 of the 8 directions. These results suggest that Wii Fit balance activities can positively impact dynamic balance as measured by the SEBT. Although replication of this study with other populations is needed, these initial findings suggest that Wii Fit may provide an alternative to more traditional balance training activities.
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