Balance Exercises Can Help Prevent Falls

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If you are a senior, having good balance can help to prevent falls and maintain your independence.  Falls are the leading cause of death from injury among people 65 years and older, and the risk of falls increases proportionately with age.  By age 80, over half of seniors fall annually.

Some of the reason for this is a decline in seniors’ overall physical fitness as well as chronic diseases, certain medications, and surgeries.  One example is diabetes, a common disease in the elderly that can lead to peripheral neuropathy, or nerve damage and cause numbness in the hands, feet, and other parts of the body.  Medications that lower blood pressure may cause faintness or dizziness, and hip replacements and knee surgeries can result in the elderly being unsteady on their feet.

While many exercises help with balance including something as simple as walking, experts recommend that older adults incorporate exercises into their daily routine that are specifically designed to improve balance.  Most balance exercises can be done at home without any special equipment and only take a few minutes to do.

The National Institute on Aging offers several balance exercises on their website.  One example is to put the heel of one foot in front of the toes of the other foot. Your heel and toes should touch or almost touch.  Focus on a spot ahead of you as this will help to keep you steady as you walk. Now take a step and put your heel just in front of the toes of your other foot.  They suggest trying to do 20 steps.

MorningStar of Santa Fe knows it is important for our residents to stay as active as possible, which is why our monthly calendar will include a whole hosts of exercises designed to help residents improve their flexibility, balance and muscle and joint strength.  We also have other classes and activities designed to enhance residents’ mental, social and spiritual connections. Please visit our website or our onsite Information Center to learn more.

Please check with your doctor before starting any new form of exercise.   

MorningStar of Santa Fe offers the very best in senior living with our distinct mission statement of “to honor, to serve, to invest.”  Our foundation is built on honoring God, valuing all seniors and selecting staff with a felt calling to serve to create a true “home” for residents.  We invite you to give us a call or stop by our onsite Information Center for more details on compassionate memory care and assisted living in Santa Fe, NM.

Source:

go4life.nia.nih.gov/exercise-type/balance

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