2015 年 27 巻 1 号 p. 139-142
[Purpose] The aim of this study was to examine the effects of balance training and muscle training around the ankle joints on the gait of elderly people who have experienced a fall. [Subjects] Twenty-six elderly people with a risk of falling and a Berg Balance Scale score of 37 to 50 points who had experienced a fall in the last year were randomly and equally assigned to either a balance training group or an ankle training group. The balance training group received training on a hard floor, training while maintaining balance on a cushion ball in a standing position, and training while maintaining balance on an unstable platform in a standing position; the ankle training group received training to strengthen the muscles around the ankle joints and conducted stretch exercise for the muscles around the ankle joints. [Results] There were significant changes in gait velocity, step length, and stride length in the balance training group after the intervention; there were significant changes in gait velocity, cadence, step time, cycle time, step length, and stride length in the ankle training group after the intervention. In a between-group comparison, the gait velocity of the balance training group showed a significant improvement compared with the ankle training group. [Conclusion] Both balance training and ankle joint training are effective in enhancing the gait ability of elderly people with a risk of falling; in particular, balance training is effective in improving the gait velocity of elderly people who have experienced a fall compared with ankle joint training.