Background. The purpose of this study was to determine if the prioritization of postural control over secondary task performance is altered in younger and older adults under different conditions of postural threat. Methods. Fifteen healthy older adults (mean age = 69.53 +/- 5.78) and 15 younger adults (mean age = 22.00 +/- 2.17) performed Brooks' Spatial Letter Task (BST) while standing in four conditions of postural threat. Galvanic skin conductance (GSC) was collected to measure changes in physiological arousal. BST task duration was used to measure changes in cognitive performance, and center of pressure (COP) area was used to determine changes in postural stability across each of the testing conditions. A prioritization index was calculated based on the relative change in BST and COP across testing conditions. This measure was used to quantify changes in the relationship between postural control and secondary task performance under conditions of postural threat. Results. Measures of GSC increased in younger and older adults in response to conditions of increased postural threat. Prioritization index scores revealed that a greater number of older adults than younger adults prioritized postural control over secondary task performance under conditions of increased postural threat. Conclusions. Environmental contexts that alter postural threat may lead to modifications in the prioritization between postural control and secondary task performance among older adults. This relationship may have implications for postural control under situations that do not afford deterioration in secondary task performance.