Moderate treadmill run worsened static but not dynamic postural stability of healthy individuals

  • Giuseppe MarcolinEmail author
  • Fausto Antonio Panizzolo
  • Elena Biancato
  • Matteo Cognolato
  • Nicola Petrone
  • Antonio Paoli
Original Article



Running has been demonstrated to be one of the most relevant exercise in altering static postural stability, while limiting attention has been paid to its effects on dynamic postural stability. The aim of the present study was to investigate if 25 min of moderate running on a treadmill altered static and dynamic postural stability in healthy subjects.


Eight female and six male participants (age 27.7 ± 8.3 years, height 170.9 ± 12.2 cm, weight 63.9 ± 15.6 kg) took part in the study. Before and after the run static postural stability was evaluated on a stabilometric platform (10 trials of 30 s each), while dynamic postural stability was assessed on an instrumented unstable platform (2 trials of 30 s each).


After the treadmill run the area of the confident ellipse (from 67.97 ± 34.56 to 93.08 ± 50.00 mm2), sway path velocity (from 6.92 ± 1.85 to 7.83 ± 2.57 mm/s), sway area velocity (from 6.88 ± 3.27 to 9.54 ± 5.36 mm2/s), and medio-lateral maximal oscillation (from 9.48 ± 2.80 to 11.44 ± 3.64 mm) significantly increased. Stabilogram diffusion analysis showed no statistically significant difference in the diffusion coefficients, both short and long term. No statistically significant differences were reported in all the parameters of the dynamic postural stability test.


The contrasting results of the static and dynamic postural stability tests raise the question of which are the more selective tests to assess the acute effect of physical exercise on postural stability among healthy individuals. The proper interaction of both static and dynamic postural evaluations could represent the next challenge in the postural stability assessment.


Balance assessment Postural stability CoP Running 





Centre of gravity


Centre of pressure


Long-term diffusion coefficient combining x- and y-axes


Short-term diffusion coefficient combining x- and y-axes


Long-term diffusion coefficient along the x-axis


Short-term diffusion coefficient along the x-axis


Long-term diffusion coefficient along the y-axis


Short-term diffusion coefficient along the y-axis


Full balance


Fine balance


Gross balance




Stabilogram diffusion analysis


Author contributions

GM, FAP, and AP conceived and designed the experiments. GM, EB performed the experiments. GM, EB, MC, and NP analyzed the data. NP and AP contributed materials. GM, FAP, and MC wrote the paper. All authors approved the final version of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biomedical SciencesUniversity of PadovaPaduaItaly
  2. 2.John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied SciencesHarvard UniversityCambridgeUSA
  3. 3.School of Human Movement SciencesUniversity of PadovaPaduaItaly
  4. 4.Institute of Information SystemsUniversity of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland (HES-SO)SierreSwitzerland
  5. 5.Department of Industrial EngineeringUniversity of PadovaPaduaItaly

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