Relationships among age, gender, anthropometric characteristics, and dynamic balance in children 5 to 12 years old

The objective of this study was to investigate relationships among age, gender, anthropometrics, and dynamic balance. Height, weight, and arm and foot length were measured in 160 children with normal development aged 5 to 12 years. Dynamic balance was assessed using the Timed Up and Go (TUG) test, Pediatric Reach Test (PRT), and Pediatric Balance Scale (PBS). Moderate to good positive relationships (r = 0.61 and r = 0.56) were found between increasing age and PRT and PBS scores. A fair negative relationship (r = -0.49) was seen between age and TUG test. No significant gender-by-age group difference was observed. Age had the greatest effect on TUG and PBS scores; arm length had the strongest influence on PRT scores.

Dynamic balance ability has a direct relationship with chronological age. Age and arm length have the strongest relationships with balance scores. These findings could aid pediatric therapists in selecting dynamic balance tests according to age as opposed to a specific diagnosis.