Can a balance wristband influence postural control?

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Abstract

Top sports performances cannot be achieved without a high level of postural control. Balance wristbands purport to improve the mental and physical balance of the wearer. It is still unclear, however, whether these wristbands can indeed enhance postural control. Our purpose was to ascertain by means of computerized dynamic posturography whether balance wristbands can improve postural stability.

In this randomized controlled single-blind clinical study, posturography was used to assess postural control in 179 healthy subjects with or without a balance wristband. Tests were also performed with the subjects blinded as to whether they were wearing an intact or a defective wristband. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to detect significant differences (P < 0.05).

Stability indexes did not reveal significant differences in postural control between wearing and not wearing a wristband.

Our study did not provide evidence for an improvement in postural stability. Since the single-blind trials too revealed no significant differences, a placebo effect could be ruled out.

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