Investigating Changes in Real-time Conscious Postural Processing by Older Adults during Different Stance Positions Using Electroencephalography Coherence

Debbie C.L. Chan, Thomson W.L. Wong, Frank F. Zhu, Chi Cheng Lam, William R. Young, Catherine M. Capio, Rich S.W. Masters

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Study Context: Adjustments of posture in response to balance challenges may lead to subsequent increases in conscious posture processing. If cognitive resources are stretched by conscious processing of postural responses fewer resources will be available to attend to environmental trip or fall hazards. The objective of the study was to explore brain activity related to conscious processing of posture as a function of movement specific reinvestment and fear of falling. Method: Forty-three older adults (M = 71.4, SD = 4.1) stood with a wide or narrow stance on a force-plate while neural coherence between verbal-analytical (T3) and motor planning (Fz) regions of the brain was assessed using electroencephalography. The propensity for movement specific reinvestment was assessed using the Chinese version Movement Specific Reinvestment Scale (MSRS-C) and fear of falling was assessed using the Chinese version Fall Efficacy Scale International (FES-I[CH]). Results: Scores from the MSRS-C were negatively correlated with changes in T3-Fz coherence that occurred when participants shifted from wide to narrow stance. Together, MSRS-C and FES-I(CH) uniquely predicted the percentage change in T3-Fz coherence between the two stance conditions. Conclusion: Presented with two postural tasks of different complexities, participants with a lower propensity for conscious control of their movements (movement specific reinvestment) exhibited larger changes in real-time brain activity (neural coherence) associated with conscious postural processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)410-423
Number of pages14
JournalExperimental Aging Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 20 Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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