The purpose of this study was to determine whether obesity is associated with less postural stability in young adults, and whether it is influenced by anterior pelvic tilt angle and sensory dysfunction. Center of gravity (COG) velocity and total sway distance with eyes open or eyes closed on firm or foam floors were determined in 12 obese individuals and 12 individuals with normal weight.
On firm and foam floors with eyes closed, center of gravity velocity and total sway distance were significantly greater in the obese group than in the normal-weight group. However, on firm and foam floors with eyes open, center of gravity velocity and total sway distance were not significantly different in the two groups.
The clinical implication of our findings is that obese young adults exhibit poor postural stability. The findings also suggested that postural instability in obese individuals is associated with increased lordosis due to abdominal fat and poor integration of plantar somatosensory input.