Star Excursion & Y Balance Test in Older Adults
Osteoporosis and Star Excursion Balance Test?
In order to stimulate bone growth, bone and joint loads during exercise need to exceed the osteogenic threshold. This study found that several activities did just that:
“In the order of increasing bone load at the hip, and hence increasing bone growth stimulation, are the following: demi plié, star excursion balance test with maximum reach criterion, grande plié and star excursion balance test with maximum speed criterion.”
TAKE HOME: I would not necessarily use the Star Excursion Balance Test as a training exercise if I were also using it as a test for an individual (it is usually not a good idea to practice the same test over and over and assume you have improved). However, this study emphasizes the importance of using body weight testing and training particularly with our older adults. This also puts us one step closer to my life crusade of everyone receiving an annual musculoskeletal exam including movement and balance testing.
Shippen JM. The generation of loads in excess of the osteogenic threshold by physical movement. Proc Inst Mech Eng H. 2013 [Epub ahead of print]