Consortium led by Tibor Hortobágyi published an article in Sports Medicine Open

Professor Honoris Causa Tibor Hortobágyi, PhD, research professor, Department of Kinesiology, published a review as a senior author of an international consortium comprising 10 authors from five countries.

The review reports that very short (1-2 sessions, 'acute') and very long (30-40 sessions, 'chronic') training programs designed to improve standing and walking balance, as expected, were effective in healthy younger and older adults.

However, a very important and unexpected result was that these changes in standing and walking balance ability and nor the markers of neural adaptation at the spinal cord and brain level revealed did reveal training-dose effects.

Surprisingly, additional training sessions did not further improve the gains produced by one-two, 20-30-minute-long balance training sessions. In other words, although the researchers in the individual studies did increase the 'intensity' of the balancing tasks by making the tasks incrementally more difficult, complex, or fast across training sessions, these additional sessions did not further increase the improvements accrued after the initial 1-2 training sessions in the trained and untrained (transfer) balance tasks.

Virtually no studies examined whether the retention of balancing ability, i.e. the level of motor memory related to balancing, improved in proportion to the number of training sessions (dose). In contrast to these results, how curious that even after decade-long breaks, we don't 'forget' how to bicycle or skate, skills we learned as a child!

Source: Bakker LBM, Lamoth CJC, Gruber M, Caljouw SR, Nieboer W, Taube W, van Dieën JH, Granacher U, Hortobágyi T. Neural correlates of balance skill learning in healthy young and older

individuals: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Sports Medicine Open 10 (1):3, 2024.

Consortium member institutions:

Department of Human Movement Science, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands Faculty of Physical Education and Sport, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic Department of Sport Science, Human Performance Research Centre, University of Kontanz, Constance, Germany Department of Neurosciences and Movement Sciences, University of Fribourg, Fribourg, Switzerland Department of Human Movement Sciences, Amsterdam Movement Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands Department of Sport and Sport Science, Exercise and Human Movement Science, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany

2024. Hungarian University of Sports Science.
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