Effects of dance on gait and balance in Parkinsons disease: A comparison of partnered and nonpartnered dance movement

Madeleine E. Hackney, Gammon M. Earhart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

139 Scopus citations

Abstract

Partnered tango dance can improve balance and gait in individuals with Parkinsons disease (PD). Partnered dance may allow these individuals to challenge balance more than nonpartnered dance. Alternatively, partnered practice could reduce balance gains because the participant may rely on the partner as a balance aid when challenged. The authors compared the effects of partnered and nonpartnered dance on balance and mobility in 39 people (11 women) with mild-moderate PD (Hoehn and Yahr stages I-III). Participants were randomly assigned to partnered or nonpartnered tango and attended 1-hour classes twice per week, completing 20 lessons within 10 weeks. Balance and gait were evaluated in the weeks immediately before, immediately after, and 1 month after the intervention. Both groups significantly improved on the Berg Balance Scale, comfortable and fast-as-possible walking velocity, and cadence. Improvements were maintained at the 1-month follow-up. The nonpartnered class improved as much as the partnered class; however, partnered participants expressed more enjoyment and interest in continuing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)384-392
Number of pages9
JournalNeurorehabilitation and neural repair
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2010

Keywords

  • Balance
  • Dance
  • Exercise
  • Gait
  • Parkinsons disease
  • Retention

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