Effect of sensory conditions on postural control in children aged 4 to 7 years

Vicent Úbeda Pastor, Salvador Llana Belloch, Xavier García Massó

Abstract


Introduction: Maintaining stability and body balance are key aspects of motor development during childhood. These are functions of the postural control system, which is linked to the sensory and motor nervous systems. Material and Methods: We studied the effect of sensory conditions of different tasks on postural control in 66 children aged 4 to 7 years. Three tests were passed: visual alteration test, vestibular alteration test and proprioceptive alteration test. Three mixed model MANOVA tests were performed, one for each test, in order to verify the effect of age (x4) and block (x6) on the 3 study variables. Results: The results show that age and block had a main effect on the dependent variables in the 3 tests performed, as well as an effect of age-block interaction on the vestibular test. In addition, the proprioceptive alteration generates a greater postural imbalance and, afterwards, there was a greater sensory reweighting. Conclusions: an effect of the sensorial condition was found in all tests on the postural control in all the ages studied. Moreover, it was observed that the alteration of the vestibular information affects the youngest children to a greater extent.

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