Clinical assessment of balance: normative data, and gender and age effects

Int J Audiol. 2008 Feb;47(2):67-75. doi: 10.1080/14992020701689688.


The purpose of this study was to provide age specific normative data of clinical gait and balance tests and to determine to what extent gender contributes to differences in postural control. Standing balance and walking performance was tested in 318 asymptomatic adults. The logistic regression, using both 10- and 30-second time limits as a dichotomization point, revealed a significant age effect for standing on foam with eyes closed, tandem Romberg with eyes closed (TR-EC), and one leg stance (eyes open and closed). The actual effect of decline was different for each test. Both tandem gait and dynamic gait index showed a ceiling effect up to 60 years of age, with a rapid decline of performance for subjects in their seventies. Linear regression equations indicated that for both men and women, timed up and go test (TUG) times increased with age, but even older subjects should perform the TUG in 10 seconds or less. Women performed significantly poorer on the TUG and TR-EC (30-second time limit).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Gait
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurologic Examination / methods*
  • Neurologic Examination / statistics & numerical data
  • Postural Balance*
  • Proprioception
  • Sensation Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Sex Factors
  • Vestibular Function Tests / methods*
  • Vestibular Function Tests / statistics & numerical data
  • Walking