Description of Effect of Selected Balance Exercises on the Dynamic Balance of Children with Visual Impairments
Structured abstract: Introduction: Maintaining balance while walking is of utmost importance for individuals with visual impairments because deficits in dynamic balance have been associated with a high risk of falling. Thus, the primary aim of the study presented here was to determine whether balance training effects the dynamic balance of children with visual impairments. Methods: The study included 19 children with visual impairments (aged 8 to 14) from the school for students with visual impairments in Isfahan, Iran, who were randomly assigned to a balance-training (n = 9) or control (n = 10) group. The balance-training group was required to participate in an eight-week balance-training program, while the control group did not participate in any organized balance-training program. The Modified Bass Test of Dynamic Balance was used to measure the dynamic balance of the participants. Both groups performed a pretest prior to the experimental period and performed a posttest immediately after the experimental period. Results: The scores on the pretest showed no significant difference between the balance-training group and the control group. However, after the balance-training group completed the balance-training program, a between-group difference was found in the participants' task scores, t (18) = 4.095, p < .05. Discussion: The findings indicate that involvement in a balance-training program will significantly improve the dynamic balance of individuals with visual impairments relative to a control group. Implications for practitioners: The study showed that if instructors require individuals with visual impairments to perform balance-improving exercises, the result can be an outstanding improvement in their dynamic balance. With improved balance, individuals with visual impairments may encounter fewer falls and experience a healthier lifestyle.