Comparison of Functional Reach in Fallers and Nonfallers in an Independent Retirement Community
ISBN or ISSN
Publication Date / Copyright Date
Taylor & Francis Inc.
The older population in America is steadily increasing. Additionally, falls increase dramatically with age. Balance disorders and postural control changes have been found to contribute to falls sustained by the elderly. Functional Reach (FR) has been proposed as a simple balance assessment tool which is valid, reliable, and sensitive to changes in balance. The aim of this study was to compare the FR of fallers and nonfallers living independently in a retirement community. Fifty-two subjects were divided into three age groups and categorized by fall status. The first three correctly performed FR trials were measured and recorded. After the age of 84 years, FR significantly decreases. There were no significant differences in the FR between fallers and nonfallers among community dwelling seniors. A simple standardized balance assessment tool needs to be developed to identify those older people at risk for falling. Functional Reach has the potential to be such a tool. However, FR needs to be standardized according to the age and activity level of the population being tested.
Medicine and Health Sciences
Functional Reach, Falls, Balance Assessment, Elderly
Franzen, Holly; Hettrick, Heather; Landreth, Christina; Beling, Janna; Greenberg, Marcia; and Canfield, Judith, "Comparison of Functional Reach in Fallers and Nonfallers in an Independent Retirement Community" (1998). Department of Physical Therapy Faculty Articles. 22.