A dynamic balance test with a growing weight of support in the literature is the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT). This is a dynamic postural stability test.
Here at the Performance lab we use this test to identify neuromuscular control problems. We now know that improving your score on the balance test is clinically linked with a reduction in back pain, hip pain knee pain and ankle pain.
How to do it
You stand with your foot in the centre of the Y as shown in the picture. While keeping your hands on your hips you gently reach your leg as far as you can in each direction. You have 4 practice trials then we measure 5th trial. We then add the three reaches up and divide by 3 to get an average reach score. This score is then normalised to your leg length to give us a final percentage.
To have the correct control when walking outdoors on the flat we feel you would need a percentage reach of your leg length over 75%
To walk up and down hills which takes more effort and is less stable, we feel a score over 80%would suffice.
To perform a gentle jog on a treadmill we would be looking for a score over 85%.
To run outdoors regularly we would be aiming over 90%.
to play non competitive sport over 95%.
and finally to return to high impact and contact sport over 100%
Don't rely on this alone
This test is just one of the barrage of tests we perform at the Performance Lab. To ensure safety we do not rely on this test alone and use several other strength and biomechanical analysis tests to ensure we return you to dynamic exercise safely.
What to do next
if you feel you may have trouble performing this test and are interested in knowing whether you have optimum neuromuscular control to avoid injury, please drop us a line at The Performance Lab.
next time we will talk about strength testing and how we do this at the Performance lab.