Performance of High School Adolescents on Functional Gait and Balance Measures

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Abstract

Purpose:

To describe the performance of high school adolescents during common functional gait and balance measures used in vestibular physical therapy.

Methods:

A cross-sectional study of 91 participants determined their performance on the Activities-specific Balance Confidence (ABC) scale, Dynamic Gait Index, Functional Gait Assessment, Timed “Up and Go” (TUG), Five Times Sit to Stand (FTSTS) test, tests of gait speed (GS), and the Balance Error Scoring System. In a subset of this sample, GS, TUG, and the FTSTS were repeated twice to examine test-retest reliability.

Results:

The measures of GS, TUG, and FTSTS were normally distributed. The Activities-specific Balance Confidence, Dynamic Gait Index, and Functional Gait Assessment exhibited a ceiling effect. The timed measures exhibited moderate to good reliability.

Conclusions:

These performance scores may provide end points for discharge from vestibular physical therapy. However, clinicians should be aware of the ceiling effect exhibited by some measures.

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