Important information for the Balance Assessment

* Regardless of shoe type, all shoes must be removed prior to taking this test.

Aside from you, the patient and a spotter, it is recommended that no one else is in the room for this assessment; patients may get distracted and/or self-conscious during this test if someone they are familiar with is in the room with them.

The possible errors that you will be looking for are listed on the setup page, as well as each page of the test should you forget what counts as an error.

* If a spotter is available, it is highly recommended that you use one.  If no one else is available to act as spotter, you may do so since the timer does not need to be watched.

* Pay FULL ATTENTION to the patient, NOT the timer on the Surface. The timer will audibly chime once 20 seconds has gone by. Make sure that the Microsoft Surfaces’ volume is turned all the way up so you will be able to hear the chime once the timer has finished.

* Remember to stand in front of the patient – not behind them or to the side – when watching them for errors, so you can see if the patient opens their eyes.

* When a patient does not know which foot is their dominant foot, use the “Ball Kick” method.  This is the same method used when creating the BESS test, so we ask that you refrain from using any other methods for standardization purposes.

HOW TO PERFORM THE BALL KICK TEST (BKT):
1. Stand directly in front of the patient and tell them that you are going to roll an imaginary ball toward them.  Instruct them to kick the ball back to you.
2. Roll the imaginary ball toward the patient using both hands.
3. The leg selected to kick the ball is the patient’s dominant leg.