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Fatma Ben Waer

University of Sfax, Tunisia [11:30- 12:00PM]

Title: Correlation between Cognitive functioning and Postural control following Zumba Dancing in Middle-Aged Women

Oral Presentation


Purpose: This study aimed to investigate the effect of 12-week of Zumba dancing on postural control and cognitive parameters and the correlations between these parameters in middle-aged women.

 Method: Thirty-eight women, aged between 50 and 60 years, were randomly allocated to a Zumba group (ZG) or control group. Postural control and cognitive functions [working memory (WM) and reaction time (RT)] were assessed before and after 12-week of Zumba dancing program using a stabilometric force platform, Corsi Block-Tapping Task and Simple RT tests, respectively.

 Results: ZG showed significantly (p<.01) better balance performances when standing on a stable surface in both visual conditions [firm surface with eyes opened (EO)/ eyes closed (EC)]. However, the ZG showed no significant improvement in postural control, when standing on an unstable surface in both visual conditions (foam surface with EO/EC), and cognitive (RT/WM) performances. These cognitive performances were related to postural control in challenging conditions and can be considered an effective tool for monitoring postural performances following an intervention program.

Conclusion: Zumba dancing was effective in improving postural control in simple condition. Yet, its benefits on postural control depend on the sensory condition. 12-week of Zumba dancing was not sufficient to enhance cognitive performances Cognitive functioning was related to postural performance following Zumba dancing. Clinicians should, therefore, focus on interventions that boost cognitive functions in middle-aged women to achieve optimal postural control, mainly in challenging conditions, in order to prevent the risk and fear of falls as well as the incidence of falling.



Fatma Ben Waer, PhD., is a Researcher specialist at Sciences and Techniques of Physical and Sports Activities, and a part-time university teacher in the High Institute of Sport and Physical Education of Sfax. She received her PhD in Sciences of Physical and Sports Activities from university of Sfax at the age of 28 years. Her research focuses on physical activity, caffeine rehabilitation, cognitive and motor behaviors, postural balance, falls prevention and the health of middle-aged women. She has published more than 15 papers in reputed journals and has been serving as an editorial board member of repute.

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