—Literature shows that some health outcomes (e.g., eating, breathing, and speaking) are directly related to posture. Evidence of outcomes mediated by wheelchair seated posture is limited to interface pressure, physical function, and wheelchair skills and safety. This study’s purpose was to develop and validate a rapid, low-burden, paper-pencil assessment of wheelchair seated posture for research use and to test feasibility of its use with a sample of older adults. We used a prospective design and a convenience sample of older adults who were receiving rehabilitation services in a community living center. Forty-nine older wheelchair users participated. Main measures were the Seated Posture Scale (SPS), Modified Ashworth Scale, Barthel Index, Visual Descriptor Scale, scale-content validity index (S-CVI), Cronbach alpha, and test-retest reliability. Rating by six experts yielded the overall content validity score (S-CVI) of 0.744. Total SPS score correlated positively with physical function (Barthel Index, r = 0.46, p < 0.001) and negatively with muscle tone (Modified Ashworth Scale, r = –0.44, p = 0.001), supporting SPS construct validity. Internal consistency was 0.66 (Cronbach alpha). Test-retest reliability yielded Pearson product-moment correlations of 0.89 to 0.99. We conclude that the SPS has sufficient preliminary validity and reliability to support its use as an evaluation of wheelchair seated posture in outcomes research.
JRRD: Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development
Rehabilitation Research and Development Service, Department of Veterans Affairs
Barks, L., Luther, S. L., Brown, L. M., Schulz, B., Bowen, M. E., & Powell-Cope, G. (2015). Development and initial validation of the Seated Posture Scale. JRRD: Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, 52(2), 201-210. http://dx.doi.org/10.1682/JRRD.2014.04.0100