A randomized trial comparing Tai Chi with and without cognitive-behavioral intervention (CBI) to reduce fear of falling in community-dwelling elderly people

Yat Wa Justina Liu, Chi Man Tsui

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this randomized trial was to compare the effects of Tai Chi with and without CBI on a primary outcome of reducing the fear of falling, and on secondary outcomes including encouraging better social engagement, improving self-perceived personal wellbeing, and achieving better mobility among elderly people with fear of falling. One hundred and twenty-two community-dwelling elderly people aged ≥65 were randomly assigned to either a Tai Chi or a Tai Chi plus CBI group. Participants' level of fear of falling, physical mobility, self-perceived personal wellbeing and social participation were compared before and after completing the 8-week intervention and then at a 2-month follow-up. The findings showed that Tai Chi both with and without CBI had a similar effect on reducing elderly people's fear of falling, but only Tai Chi plus CBI had a positive effect on participants' self-perceived personal wellbeing. Tai Chi both with and without CBI had no effect on participants' self-perceived social participation and mobility. Apart from a slight improvement in participants' self-perceived personal wellbeing, other outcome effects were similar for Tai Chi with and without CBI. This finding raises a question about the additive effects of combined intervention over Tai Chi alone in reducing elderly people's fear of falling. In view of the higher demand for resources and manpower to implement a combined intervention, further study is still required to confirm the potential additional benefits of this combined intervention prior to recommending it to community services.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-325
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Gerontology and Geriatrics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sep 2013


  • Cognitive behavioral
  • Elderly
  • Falls
  • Fear of falling
  • Tai Chi exercise

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Ageing
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

Cite this