Forest Melton

Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Exercise Science



First Advisor

Christopher Ray


Falls are the leading cause of nonfatal injuries in older adults, and often lead to adverse changes in confidence and lifestyle that trigger further declines in postural control. Decreased fitness is associated with poor performance on postural control assessments, especially those that increase task difficulty. The purpose of this study was to analyze the impact of a traditional Group Fitness class and a Wii Fitness exercise program on individual's ability to maintain postural control, with an environmental distracter. 87 community dwelling seniors were randomized into 1 of 3 groups (Control, Wii Fitness, Group Fitness). Interventions were delivered 3 times per week, for 15 weeks. A significant improvement in SOT equilibrium score was seen over time. There was a significant training group by time interaction for 6 min walk, p = 0.14, effect size = .776. There was a significant pre-test (7.2 ± 1.4) post-test (6.7 ± 1.4) comparison for 8 ft Up and Go, p = 0.017. There was a significant interaction between training groups and time (p = 0.010) for chair stands. Post hoc tests revealed that equilibrium scores during cognitive distraction (38.1 ± 20.9) were significantly less than both the visual distraction (51.9 ± 20.2) and auditory distraction (49.3 ± 21.1). There were no differences during the increased environmental load testing (p = 0.686). Results indicated that both intervention programs were successful at improving postural control and fitness.


Kinesiology | Life Sciences


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

Included in

Kinesiology Commons