Special Issue "Ageing Effects on Kinematics, Kinetics and Balance"

A special issue of Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Juri Taborri
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Economics, Engineering, Society and Business Organization, Tuscia University, 01100 Viterbo, Italy
Interests: biomechanics; movement analysis; artificial intelligence; muscle synergies; measurements; robotics; sport engineering; wearable sensors
Dr. Ilaria Mileti
Website
Guest Editor
Sapienza University of Rome
Interests: biomechanics; wearable sensors; gait analysis; posturography; falling; rehabilitation; robotics; machine learning; EMG; measurements

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Motor performance grows drastically worse with age. The accurate measurement of motor performance deterioration can lead to the early detection of impairments and the avoidance of disability and death. Increasing evidence suggests that walking and balance are two of the main daily tasks more affected in elderly people. In addition, physical deterioration leads to an increase of falls, which are demonstrated to occur in 13% of elders at least once in their life. Falls are also recognized as one of the main causes of impairments and hospitalization.

In the last year, technological progress has permitted the enlargement of the applicability of functional tests outside clinical environments, facilitating the daily monitoring of older motor performance. Wearable sensors and synthetic quantitative indices have been demonstrated as promising tools for kinematics, kinetics, and balance evaluations.

This Special Issue aims at exploring motor performance deterioration in elderly people in order to propose innovative methodologies, tests, or wearable sensors that might be proposed as routine tools for combatting motor decline in older persons. Innovative studies on kinematics, kinetics and balance, as well as on muscle activity will provide deep insights into the ageing process.

Dr. Juri Taborri
Dr. Ilaria Mileti
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Healthcare is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Elderly
  • Ageing
  • Kinematics
  • Kinetics
  • Posturography
  • Balance
  • Electromyography
  • Movement analysis
  • Gait analysis
  • Biomechanics
  • Wearable sensors
  • Falls

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Effects of Balance Shoes on Balance and Postural Stability in the Elderly: A Crossover, Controlled, Randomized Single-Blind Study
Healthcare 2021, 9(2), 179; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020179 - 08 Feb 2021
Abstract
The risk of falling increases with age. Individuals wearing unadapted shoes present an aggravating risk factor. The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of specifically designed balance shoes on balance and postural stability in healthy elderly people compared to that [...] Read more.
The risk of falling increases with age. Individuals wearing unadapted shoes present an aggravating risk factor. The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of specifically designed balance shoes on balance and postural stability in healthy elderly people compared to that of their usual shoes. In total, 21 healthy individuals aged 65–84 years (76.0 ± 8.0 years) performed balance tests (bipedal with open or closed eyes, unipedal with open eyes, limits of stability, and step cadence) while wearing their (i) personal shoes or (ii) balance shoes (Axis Comfort Development©). Three test sessions were conducted with personal and balance shoes. The first served as the baseline, and the other two were performed after a familiarization period of several days with the personal or balance shoes. The perception of balance shoe efficiency was documented using a questionnaire. The balance shoes significantly improved bipedal balance with closed eyes. Moreover, the familiarization period significantly improved unipedal balance with open eyes. Most subjects felt safer and stabler using balance shoes. The investigated specifically designed balance shoes were effective in elderly individuals in improving postural balance compared to personal shoes. The balance shoes could, therefore, reduce the falling risk in healthy elderly people. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing Effects on Kinematics, Kinetics and Balance)
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Open AccessArticle
Applying the Minimal Detectable Change of a Static and Dynamic Balance Test Using a Portable Stabilometric Platform to Individually Assess Patients with Balance Disorders
Healthcare 2020, 8(4), 402; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040402 - 14 Oct 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Balance disorders have a high prevalence among elderly people in developed countries, and falls resulting from balance disorders involve high healthcare costs. Therefore, tools and indicators are necessary to assess the response to treatments. Therefore, the aim of this study is to detect [...] Read more.
Balance disorders have a high prevalence among elderly people in developed countries, and falls resulting from balance disorders involve high healthcare costs. Therefore, tools and indicators are necessary to assess the response to treatments. Therefore, the aim of this study is to detect relevant changes through minimal detectable change (MDC) values in patients with balance disorders, specifically with vertigo. A test-retest of a static and dynamic balance test was conducted on 34 healthy young volunteer subjects using a portable stabilometric platform. Afterwards, in order to show the MDC applicability, eight patients diagnosed with balance disorders characterized by vertigo of vestibular origin performed the balance test before and after a treatment, contrasting the results with the assessment by a specialist physician. The balance test consisted of four tasks from the Romberg test for static balance control, assessing dynamic postural balance through the limits of stability (LOS). The results obtained in the test-retest show the reproducibility of the system as being similar to or better than those found in the literature. Regarding the static balance variables with the lowest MDC value, we highlight the average velocity of the center of pressure (COP) in all tasks and the root mean square (RMS), the area, and the mediolateral displacement in soft surface, with eyes closed. In LOS, all COP limits and the average speed of the COP and RMS were highlighted. Of the eight patients assessed, an agreement between the specialist physician and the balance test results exists in six of them, and for two of the patients, the specialist physician reported no progression, whereas the balance test showed worsening. Patients showed changes that exceeded the MDC values, and these changes were correlated with the results reported by the specialist physician. We conclude that (at least for these eight patients) certain variables were sufficiently sensitive to detect changes linked to balance progression. This is intended to improve decision making and individualized patient monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing Effects on Kinematics, Kinetics and Balance)
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Open AccessArticle
The Effects of Systematic Environmental Manipulation on Gait of Older Adults
Healthcare 2020, 8(4), 386; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040386 - 06 Oct 2020
Abstract
Quantification of gait changes in response to altered environmental stimuli may allow for improved understanding of the mechanisms that influence gait changes and fall occurrence in older adults. This study explored how systematic manipulation of a single dimension of one’s environment affects spatiotemporal [...] Read more.
Quantification of gait changes in response to altered environmental stimuli may allow for improved understanding of the mechanisms that influence gait changes and fall occurrence in older adults. This study explored how systematic manipulation of a single dimension of one’s environment affects spatiotemporal gait parameters. A total of 20 older adult participants walked at a self-selected pace in a constructed research hallway featuring a mobile wall, which allowed manipulation of the hallway width between three conditions: 1.14 m, 1.31 m, and 1.48 m. Spatiotemporal data from participants’ walks were captured using an instrumented GAITRite mat. A repeated measures ANOVA revealed older adults spent significantly more time in double support in the narrowest hallway width compared to the widest, but did not significantly alter other spatiotemporal measures. Small-scale manipulations of a single dimension of the environment led to subtle, yet in some cases significant changes in gait, suggesting that small or even imperceptible environmental changes may contribute to altered gait patterns for older adults. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing Effects on Kinematics, Kinetics and Balance)
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