The effects of brief swaying on postural control
Postural control can be improved with balance training. However, the nature and duration of the training required to enhance posture remains unclear. We studied the effects of 5 min of a self-initiated balance exercise along a single axis on postural control in healthy individuals. Postural control was measured before and after a 5-min period where members of the experimental group were asked to lean their entire body forward and backward and members of the control group were asked to remain seated. A significant improvement for sway velocity, a postural control variable significantly associated with an increased risk of falls, was found in the experimental group following the body sway exercise. These data suggest that a basic exercise can rapidly improve postural control and reduce the risk of falls.