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Research Article

Texting and Walking: Strategies for Postural Control and Implications for Safety

  • Siobhan M. Schabrun mail,

    s.schabrun@uq.edu.au

    Affiliation: The University of Queensland, School of Health and Rehabilitation Science and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Clinical Research Excellence in Spinal Pain, Injury and Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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  • Wolbert van den Hoorn,

    Affiliation: The University of Queensland, School of Health and Rehabilitation Science and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Clinical Research Excellence in Spinal Pain, Injury and Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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  • Alison Moorcroft,

    Affiliation: The University of Queensland, School of Health and Rehabilitation Science and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Clinical Research Excellence in Spinal Pain, Injury and Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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  • Cameron Greenland,

    Affiliation: The University of Queensland, School of Health and Rehabilitation Science and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Clinical Research Excellence in Spinal Pain, Injury and Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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  • Paul W. Hodges

    Affiliation: The University of Queensland, School of Health and Rehabilitation Science and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Centre of Clinical Research Excellence in Spinal Pain, Injury and Health, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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  • Published: January 22, 2014
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0084312

Reader Comments (2)

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Informative controls

Posted by philipm on 23 Jan 2014 at 01:25 GMT

The authors use unrestricted walking as the control in this paper.

I wonder if an appropriate control would be for the participants to hold an object (their phone turned off perhaps) in the same position as they would if they were using their mobile phones. Such a control would separate posture effects of the physical location of the phone from the cognitive effects of phone use on gait.

No competing interests declared.

RE: Informative controls

sschabrun replied to philipm on 23 Jan 2014 at 22:27 GMT

We agree that this would be a useful addition that would help to separate the effects of the physical location on posture and the effects of cognition on phone use during gait, particularly given our findings of similar effects when reading text on a mobile phone, to typing text. This is certainly something that future studies should explore to further disentangle why gait is altered during mobile phone use and walking.

No competing interests declared.