The association between unilateral heel-rise performance with static and dynamic balance in community dwelling older adults

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As a measure of both strength and muscle endurance of the plantar flexors, the unilateral heel rise (UHR) test has been suggested as a method to evaluate balance capabilities in older adults. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine the association between UHR performance with biomechanical measures of balance in seniors. Twenty-two older adults completed two testing sessions. The first visit included UHR performance; the second visit included dynamic and static motion analysis. UHR performance was significantly associated with dynamic balance capability as measured by medial-lateral inclination angle during gait. As indicated by an analysis of center of pressure, there were significant associations between UHR performance and measures of static balance. Balance is influenced by plantar flexor performance as measured by the UHR test. We therefore suggest incorporating the UHR test in analyses of balance in seniors.

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