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Article: The Role of Attentional Focus on Walking Efficiency among Older Fallers and Non-fallers

TitleThe Role of Attentional Focus on Walking Efficiency among Older Fallers and Non-fallers
Authors
Keywordsfalls
gait
muscle
efficiency
attention
Issue Date2019
PublisherOxford University Press. The Journal's web site is located at http://ageing.oxfordjournals.org/
Citation
Age and Ageing, 2019, v. 48 n. 6, p. 811-816 How to Cite?
AbstractBackground This study evaluated the effect of attentional focus instructions on movement efficiency during a level-ground walking task in older adults with and without a history of falls. Methods One hundred and thirty-four community-dwelling older adults were categorised into older fallers (OF) (n = 37) and older non-fallers (ONF) (n = 97). Each participant was instructed to walk at a self-selected pace along a 6 m walkway under three attentional focus conditions (i.e. internal, goal-directed and control) for a total of nine trials. Average muscle activity indices of lower limb co-contractions were measured using surface electromyography. Results Both shank and thigh muscle co-contractions were higher in OF than in ONF in all three conditions. OF also demonstrated higher shank muscle co-contraction under the internal relative to the goal-directed condition, with no such change observed in ONF. Conclusion Despite no significant between-group differences in functional balance and balance confidence, relative walking inefficiencies were observed in OF compared with ONF. This finding demonstrates the debilitating consequences of falling that can occur with relative independence from various physiological or psychological factors that are commonly associated with falling and used to rationalise behavioural change. We also provide evidence that OF are more susceptible to conditions that provoke them to allocate attention internally. Therefore, in clinical contexts (e.g. gait rehabilitation), verbal instructions that refer to body movements (internal focus) might serve to compromise movement efficiency in older adults with a history of falls. Such changes will, theoretically, lessen the ability to react efficiently to changing environments experienced in daily life.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/272086
ISSN
2020 Impact Factor: 10.668
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 1.611
ISI Accession Number ID

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorMAK, CT-
dc.contributor.authorYoung, WR-
dc.contributor.authorLam, WK-
dc.contributor.authorTse, ACY-
dc.contributor.authorWong, WLT-
dc.date.accessioned2019-07-20T10:35:25Z-
dc.date.available2019-07-20T10:35:25Z-
dc.date.issued2019-
dc.identifier.citationAge and Ageing, 2019, v. 48 n. 6, p. 811-816-
dc.identifier.issn0002-0729-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/272086-
dc.description.abstractBackground This study evaluated the effect of attentional focus instructions on movement efficiency during a level-ground walking task in older adults with and without a history of falls. Methods One hundred and thirty-four community-dwelling older adults were categorised into older fallers (OF) (n = 37) and older non-fallers (ONF) (n = 97). Each participant was instructed to walk at a self-selected pace along a 6 m walkway under three attentional focus conditions (i.e. internal, goal-directed and control) for a total of nine trials. Average muscle activity indices of lower limb co-contractions were measured using surface electromyography. Results Both shank and thigh muscle co-contractions were higher in OF than in ONF in all three conditions. OF also demonstrated higher shank muscle co-contraction under the internal relative to the goal-directed condition, with no such change observed in ONF. Conclusion Despite no significant between-group differences in functional balance and balance confidence, relative walking inefficiencies were observed in OF compared with ONF. This finding demonstrates the debilitating consequences of falling that can occur with relative independence from various physiological or psychological factors that are commonly associated with falling and used to rationalise behavioural change. We also provide evidence that OF are more susceptible to conditions that provoke them to allocate attention internally. Therefore, in clinical contexts (e.g. gait rehabilitation), verbal instructions that refer to body movements (internal focus) might serve to compromise movement efficiency in older adults with a history of falls. Such changes will, theoretically, lessen the ability to react efficiently to changing environments experienced in daily life.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherOxford University Press. The Journal's web site is located at http://ageing.oxfordjournals.org/-
dc.relation.ispartofAge and Ageing-
dc.rightsPre-print: Journal Title] ©: [year] [owner as specified on the article] Published by Oxford University Press [on behalf of xxxxxx]. All rights reserved. Pre-print (Once an article is published, preprint notice should be amended to): This is an electronic version of an article published in [include the complete citation information for the final version of the Article as published in the print edition of the Journal.] Post-print: This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in [insert journal title] following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version [insert complete citation information here] is available online at: xxxxxxx [insert URL that the author will receive upon publication here].-
dc.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.subjectfalls-
dc.subjectgait-
dc.subjectmuscle-
dc.subjectefficiency-
dc.subjectattention-
dc.titleThe Role of Attentional Focus on Walking Efficiency among Older Fallers and Non-fallers-
dc.typeArticle-
dc.identifier.emailWong, WLT: wongtwl@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityWong, WLT=rp01823-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.1093/ageing/afz113-
dc.identifier.pmid31579906-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-85074185087-
dc.identifier.hkuros299252-
dc.identifier.volume48-
dc.identifier.issue6-
dc.identifier.spage811-
dc.identifier.epage816-
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000498167800009-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdom-
dc.identifier.issnl0002-0729-

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