Five fall prevention exercises researchers recommend

Falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospital visits.

bathroom fall

Falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospitalisation in people aged 65 years and over, accounting for 14 per cent of emergency admissions and four per cent of all admissions.

Exercising can become harder as we age and mobility can also become an issue. These two factors can then lead to a declining ability to maintain balance and an increased incidence of falls.

Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) is promoting a series of simple exercises that can be done at home to assist with balance management.

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    People tend to be less active during the colder months, but the researchers believe that is when it is most important to keep exercising.

    University of NSW Associate Professor Kim Delbaere, one of the creators of the Standing Tall exercise program, says falls occur for a number of reasons.

    “Falls are often caused by a number of age-related conditions, such as cataracts, reduced balance and muscle strength, or slower reaction times,” she explained. “The good news is that many falls can be prevented by doing a series of simple, in-home exercises designed to improve balance.

    “Standing Tall is a home-based exercise program, designed for and with older adults. It offers a variety of tailored and evidence-based exercises, delivered through an iPad.

    “Our previous research has taught us that, to prevent falls, older people should exercise for two to three hours per week.

    “By embracing technology, we are providing an alternative exercise opportunity, which is engaging, fun and motivating, hoping to generate higher levels of adherence over a longer period of time,” she said.

    Professor Stephen Lord, who has undertaken fall prevention research at NeuRA since 1994, says falls are a major contributing factor to people being admitted to nursing homes.

    “The major serious injuries that result from falls include head injuries and fractures of the wrist, neck, trunk and hip,” Prof. Lord explains. “Falls can also result in disability, restriction of activity and fear of falling, which can reduce quality of life and independence.”

    Watch the five fall protection exercises recommended by NeuRA:





    COMMENTS

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    heyyybob
    28th Aug 2017
    11:05am
    Looking at it :)
    Polly Esther
    28th Aug 2017
    11:20am
    staying sober helps :-))
    but being tipsy negates the pain :-))
    Old Geezer
    28th Aug 2017
    11:21am
    All you have to do is go for a 5k walk every day and crawl twice around the house on your knees. Also make sure you can get up off the floor unassisted as well.
    Blondie
    29th Aug 2017
    1:13am
    I broke my left ankle last November, at the age of 75, when I mistakenly anticipated a further stair at the bottom of my stairs, lost my balance, and fell. When I arrived at Emergency, the doctor asked me if I was wearing bifocal glasses at the time....( yes!) he then said to keep them for driving, and when walking on uneven surfaces, to use single vision glasses. There's no sign regarding this in Specsavers, is there, and when I told my local store, they were quite po faced about it. You have been warned!
    heyyybob
    29th Aug 2017
    8:50am
    Hope you're OK now. I was a keen (active) bushwalker for decades and it was always necessary for me to be extra careful (wearing bifocals). It has stood me well for my retirement from the outdoors, due to 'expiry dates' on various limbs/parts but I am still very careful where I put my feet. Still put my foot in my mouth though - lifetime habit ;)
    Mez
    29th Aug 2017
    2:37pm
    As a nurse, I know that falls amongst elderlies is common.
    Main reasons for them are insufficient fluids and not the alcoholic types as they WILL contribute to falls, but also muscle wasting being synonymous with the ageing process but also due to less proteins like meat and dairy being consumed due to high costs of these products as well as due to lack of resistance training type of exercises.
    Certain medications may also cause dizziness or vertigo which of course will also contribute.
    Dim lighting and stairs are also contributing factors so if you have crook knees or hip joints or have a large 2 story house then it is time to downsize besides freeing up housing for the increasing homeless.


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