Normative data and the influence of age and gender on power, balance, flexibility, and functional movement in healthy service members

Mil Med. 2014 Apr;179(4):413-20. doi: 10.7205/MILMED-D-13-00362.


Objectives: Determine the influence of age and sex and describe normative data on field expedient tests associated with power, balance, trunk stability, mobility, and functional movement in a military population.

Methods: Participants (n = 247) completed a series of clinical and functional tests, including closed-chain ankle dorsiflexion (DF), Functional Movement Screen (FMS), Y-Balance Test Lower Quarter (YBT-LQ), Y-Balance Test Upper Quarter (YBT-UQ), single leg vertical jump (SLVJ), 6-m timed hop (6-m timed), and triple hop. Descriptive statistics were calculated. Analysis of variance tests were performed to compare the results based on sex and age (<30 years, >30 years).

Results: Service members demonstrated DF of 34.2 ± 6.1°, FMS composite score of 16.2 ± 2.2, YBT-LQ normalized composite score of 96.9 ± 8.6%, YBT-UQ normalized composite score of 87.6 ± 9.6%, SLVJ of 26.9 ± 8.6 cm, 6-m hop of 2.4 ± 0.5 seconds, and a triple hop of 390.9 ± 110.8 cm. Men performed greater than women (p < 0.05) on the YBT-LQ, YBT-UQ, SLVJ, 6-m timed, and triple hop. Those <30 years of age performed better than older participants (p < 0.05) on the DF, FMS, YBT-LQ, SLVJ, 6-m hop, and triple hop.

Conclusions: Findings provide normative data on military members. Men performed better on power, balance, and trunk stability tests, whereas younger individuals performed better on power, balance, mobility, and functional movement.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Military Personnel*
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Movement / physiology*
  • Reference Values
  • Sex Factors
  • Young Adult