Pediatric Balance Scale
The Pediatric Balance Scale is a modified version of the Berg Balance Scale that is used to assess functional balance skills in school-aged children. The scale consists of 14 items that are scored from 0 points (lowest function) to 4 points (highest function) with a maximum score of 56 points.
The Pediatric Balance Scale is intended for use with school-aged children with mild to moderate motor impairments. Pilot testing was performed on children aged 5 to 15 years.
Method of Use
- Adjustable height bench
- Chair with back support and arm rests
- Stopwatch or watch with a second hand
- Masking tape (1 inch wide)
- Step stool 6 inches in height
- Chalkboard eraser
- Ruler or yardstick
- Small level
Optional equipment that may be helpful includes: 2 child size footprints, blindfold, brightly colored object at least 2 inches in size, flash cards, 2 inches of adhesive-backed hook Velcro, two 1 foot strips of loop Velcro.
- Sitting to standing
- Standing to sitting
- Standing unsupported
- Sitting unsupported
- Standing with eyes closed
- Standing with feet together
- Standing with one foot in front
- Standing on one foot
- Turning 360 degrees
- Turning to look behind
- Retrieving object from floor
- Placing alternate foot on stool
- Reaching forward with outstretched arm
Reliability testing performed with a sample of 20 children ages 5-15 years old with mild to moderate motor impairments showed good test-retest reliability (ICC=0.998) and good interrater reliability (ICC=0.997).
Validity testing performed with a sample of 30 children ages 4-10 years old with spastic cerebral palsy in GMFCS Levels I-III showed a strong correlation between the Pediatric Balance Scale and the self-care (r=0.73, p<0.001) and mobility (r=0.82, p<0.001) dimensions of the Pediatric Disability Evaluation Inventory (PEDI).
Validity testing performed with a sample of 23 children ages 6-15 years old with spastic cerebral palsy (hemiplegia or diplegia) showed a strong correlation (r=0.797, p<0.05) between the Pediatric Balance Scale and the Selective Control Assessment of Lower Extremity (Scale).
General instructions, equipment list, and scoring criteria are available at this link: Pediatric Balance Scale.
- Franjoine MR, Gunther JS, Taylor MJ. Pediatric balance scale: a modified version of the berg balance scale for the school-age child with mild to moderate motor impairment. Pediatr Phys Ther 2003;15(2):114-28.
- Duarte Nde A, Grecco LA, Franco RC, Zanon N, Oliveira CS. Correlation between pediatric balance scale and functional test in children with cerebral palsy. J Phys Ther Sci 2014;26(6):849-53.
- Lim H. Correlation between the selective control assessment of lower extremity and pediatric balance scale scores in children with spastic cerebral palsy. J Phys Ther Sci 2015;27(12):3645-49.