Dual-Task Conditions on Static Postural Control in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

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Abstract

Dual-task (DT) consists of the performance of two tasks simultaneously. An index of DT difficulty has been linked to decreased postural control. Because a wide range of DT is employed, this study aimed to evaluate its effects in static balance in older adults. PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus were screened, and the secondary tasks were grouped as manual, reaction time, discrimination and decision making, mental tracking, verbal fluency, working memory, or "other" tasks. A total of 66 studies have been included. The meta-analysis was conducted on 28 effects and showed a significant mean effect size of d = 0.24 (p = .02, SE = 0.10; confidence interval [0.04, 0.44]), indicating a worsening in stability during DT. In conclusion, postural control was worsened by the Stroop test and the arithmetic tasks improved it. The results do not underpin any conclusive statement on the impact of DT, and a standard operating procedure was created.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Aging and Physical Activity
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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