Effect of age, dual task and vision on the sense of ankle positioning

ABSTRACT The objective of this research was to measure objectively the proprioception in different situations (with and without the aid of vision, with or without a concomitant cognitive task, and actively and passively), in elder and adult individuals. Ten healthy adults and ten healthy seniors participated in the study. The effects of different restrictions were studied in the development of movement through absolute (accuracy) and relative (consistency) errors. The sense of ankle positioning was measured with a Biodex System 3isokinetic dynamometer. Four-factor analysis of variance and the Tukey post hoc test were used to analyze the parameters. The results showed that the subject factor interferes in the absolute error, since the groups showed significant difference: the elderly make more mistakes when compared with adults. The other factors (vision, cognitive task and type of movement) did not show significant difference. In the relative error, results showed that the cognitive task concomitant to movement was capable of producing significant difference; however, the other factors (individuals, vision and type of movement) were not. Age affects the accuracy of the proprioceptive sense, regardless of the situation. There was no difference between performing the movement with and without the aid of vision, and the double task (motor associated with cognitive) affects the consistency of the movement.