2018, Volume 10, Issue 4
Is the use of pedometers feasible for identifying the volume and intensity of a balance specific exercise programme for older adults
Darja Rugelj1, Renata Vauhnik2
1Biomechanical Laboratory, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ljubljana
2Arthron, Institute for Joint and Sports Injuries
Author for correspondence: Darja Rugelj; Biomechanical Laboratory, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Ljubljana; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Background: Exercise programmes consisting of stepping were found to significantly reduce incidence of falls in the elderly. The aim of this case study was to evaluate the feasibility of step counts and to identify a specific dose, i.e. the amount and intensity of stepping during a multicomponent balance specific exercise programme.
Material and methods: Thirty fit community-dwelling older adults (69.7 ±6.2 years) participated in the study. The number of steps and the intensity of stepping per training unit was recorded with StepWatch pedometers.
Results: The average recorded number of steps per one-hour training unit was 1100 ±215. The intensity level of the activity was on average high for 43.6 ±16.6% of the unit time and moderate for 45.9 ±14.2% of the unit time, whereas only 9.9% ±3.9 of the unit time was in the low level range.
Conclusions: The use of pedometers, i.e. step counts, is feasible to monitor the intensity of the training as well as the volume and progression if needed for the balance specific exercise programmes. Additionally, this case study demonstrates that balance specific exercise programme can be organised in the way to facilitate balance by means of volitional and reactive stepping.
Key words: step count, balance training, elderly