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Everything to know about perturbation training

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Perturbation is one of the most successful balance training options especially when used with a Slip Trainer. This training program is mainly used to improve the control after sudden external perturbations. Moreover, perturbation training also helps to improve the balance of the people. Perturbation-based balance training is a type of intervention that involves regular postural perturbations. The purpose of repeated perturbations is to improve the control and balance reactions. Moreover, perturbation training also reduces the onset of falls and injuries.

Perturbation training techniques and tools

Perturbation-based balance training involves the use of equipment that brings instability to the surface. For example, 

  • Whole-body vibration platforms are used to produce vibration. 
  • Stability challenging equipment is used, such as wobble boards, foam pads, discs, beams, trainers, and stability balls.
  • Handling a vibration tool 
  • Resistance in using fitness tools, for example, a barbell, elastic tubing, kettlebells, or dumbbells.

The purpose of using this instability-causing equipment is to bring stability to the body of a person as a person tries to stand firm on his legs and feet.

Examples of perturbation techniques including training programs

Following mentioned are some of the most significant examples that can show the training programs or certain clients that include perturbation techniques and tools.

  • Perturbation with resistance involves side lunges that require the client to hold a ViPR to provide external strength from above.
  • Whole-body vibration requires pushups or squats on vibrating platforms to bring stability.
  • The use of vibration tools is quite effective, such as a hypersphere is used while the client is doing quadruped scaption.

Perturbation with manual resistance

Perturbation can also be done with the aid of a partner or manual resistance. Pushups can be done while randomly pushed and pulled. The goal of this perturbation is to make a person capable enough to overcome the forces applied on the lateral sides of his body.

Perturbation is used to rehabilitate modality

Perturbation in the right methods can be used to improve proprioception, joint function, reaction times, and muscle controls of people. Manual techniques are also used with perturbation techniques that add challenges to the rehabilitative process.

As an assessment tool

Perturbation training can also be used as an assessment tool that is used to check the readiness of a client towards reintegration into an activity or sports. Some examples that show the use of perturbation as an assessment tool are mentioned below.

  • Assessment of a fall prone patient 

Using a harness, the patient is safe from falling while they stand on a slip trainer. The therapist performs forward and back pushes of the slip trainer. The patient must take a step forward and back to regain balance.

  • Assessment of a wheelchair reliant patient

Always use a harness while working on perturbation. The therapist will both test the patients stability from front to back and also side to side. I

  • Assessment of a walker reliant patient

Still using a harness a patient will be ask to stand on a slip trainer and tested to stay balance on the slip trainers platform while the therapist pushes the platform under them in different directions to simulate what it feels like to slip or trip in real life.

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