Whole-Body-Vibration Training and Balance in Recreational Athletes With Chronic Ankle Instability

J Athl Train. 2018 Apr;53(4):355-363. doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-547-16. Epub 2018 Mar 23.


Context: Deficits in the propioceptive system of the ankle contribute to chronic ankle instability (CAI). Recently, whole-body-vibration (WBV) training has been introduced as a preventive and rehabilitative tool.

Objective: To evaluate how a 6-week WBV training program on an unstable surface affected balance and body composition in recreational athletes with CAI.

Design: Randomized controlled clinical trial.

Setting: Research laboratory.

Patients or other participants: Fifty recreational athletes with self-reported CAI were randomly assigned to a vibration (VIB), nonvibration (NVIB), or control group.

Intervention(s): The VIB and NVIB groups performed unilateral balance training on a BOSU 3 times weekly for 6 weeks. The VIB group trained on a vibration platform, and the NVIB group trained on the floor.

Main outcome measure(s): We assessed balance using the Biodex Balance System and the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT). Body composition was measured by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry.

Results: After 6 weeks of training, improvements on the Biodex Balance System occurred only on the Overall Stability Index ( P = .01) and Anterior-Posterior Stability Index ( P = .03) in the VIB group. We observed better performance in the medial ( P = .008) and posterolateral ( P = .04) directions and composite score of the SEBT in the VIB group ( P = .01) and in the medial ( P < .001), posteromedial ( P = .002), and posterolateral ( P = .03) directions and composite score of the SEBT in the NVIB group ( P < .001). No changes in body composition were found for any of the groups.

Conclusions: Only the VIB group showed improvements on the Biodex Balance System, whereas the VIB and NVIB groups displayed better performance on the SEBT.

Keywords: Biodex Balance System; balance training; vibrating platform.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Ankle Injuries / physiopathology
  • Ankle Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Ankle Joint / physiology
  • Athletic Injuries / physiopathology
  • Athletic Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Joint Instability / physiopathology
  • Joint Instability / rehabilitation*
  • Male
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Recreation / physiology
  • Self Report
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vibration / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult