Obstacle crossing, such as stepping over a curb, exerts additional demands on balance control, and therefore the study of usualpace gait patterns associated with obstacle-crossing performance may provide additional insight into understanding falls and deterioration of gait in older adults. Participants included 432 adults aged 60-96 years (218 women). Participants who failed the obstacle-crossing task (n = 181) walked slower with smaller knee range of motion than participants who successfully completed the obstacle-crossing task (all ps < .001). Participants who failed the obstacle crossing reported a greater likelihood of falling in the previous year, more balance problems, lower walking ability, and needed longer time to complete 5 chair stands than those who passed the task (all ps < .05). Obstacle-crossing task may identify gait patterns in older adults who appear functionally intact, but who are nonetheless at risk of fall and balance problems.
- Balance control
- Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (BLSA)
- Knee range of motion
- Physical function
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
- Geriatrics and Gerontology