Postural control during standing reach in children with Down syndrome

Hao Ling Chen, Chun Fu Yeh, Tsu Hsin Howe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of the present study was to investigate the dynamic postural control of children with Down syndrome (DS). Specifically, we compared postural control and goal-directed reaching performance between children with DS and typically developing children during standing reach. Standing reach performance was analyzed in three main phases using the kinematic and kinetic data collected from a force plate and a motion capture system. Fourteen children with DS, age and gender matched with fourteen typically developing children, were recruited for this study. The results showed that the demand of the standing reach task affected both dynamic postural control and reaching performance in children with DS, especially in the condition of beyond arm's length reaching. More postural adjustment strategies were recruited when reaching distance was beyond arm's length. Children with DS tended to use inefficient and conservative strategies for postural stability and reaching. That is, children with DS perform standing reach with increased reaction and execution time and decreased amplitudes of center of pressure displacements. Standing reach resembled functional balance that is required in daily activities. It is suggested to be considered as a part of strength and balance training program with graded task difficulty.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)345-351
Number of pages7
JournalResearch in Developmental Disabilities
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Down syndrome
  • Postural control
  • Reaching
  • developmental disabilities
  • childhood development
  • children with down syndrome
  • pediatric disability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • General Medicine


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