2006 Volume 43 Issue 12 Pages 828-833
Balance function is thought to be a one of the key factors that influence walking ability. The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between walking ability and various balance function tests. We measured maximum walking speed (MWS), functional reach (FR), postural sway and timed up and go test (TUG), in 25 young and 24 older healthy adults. The height of the young adults correlated with MWS, FR, total length and outer area of postural sway while standing in the tandem position and TUG, but no correlation was detected in the older adults. We found that MWS was related to the outer area of postural sway while standing in the tandem position and TUG in the young adults, and was related with FR, total length of postural sway while standing in the tandem position and TUG in the older adults. It is thought that any correlation between MWS and the balance tests in the young adults was height dependent. This study suggests that static and dynamic balance functions influence walking ability in older adults.