If you want to move effectively in all aspects of life then building strength and balance is key – and it also reduces the risk of falls as you age.
Body In Motion provides two options that will build your strength and improve your balance; the Balance for Life group exercise programme and Falls Champion home-based falls prevention programme.
Balance for Life classes
Step into one of these small group exercise classes and you’ll improve strength and balance in a friendly sociable setting. You’ll be guided through a series of exercises that can be modified to suit your ability – the exercises can be made more challenging as you become stronger, and they can be continued at home too. These classes are approved by ACC/Sport Bay of Plenty.
Falls Champion programme
If there’s a chance you could have a fall at home this home-based Falls Champion programme can help minimise the risk.
Working with your Fall Champion (a physiotherapist or physiotherapy-supervised nurse) your first home visit will involve specific testing of strength and balance, a home hazard check, and prescription of an exercise programme. The exercises are specifically designed to prevent falls and consist of progressive leg muscle strengthening and standing balance training. You’ll be encouraged to do the exercises three times a week and you’ll receive regular phone calls and in-home check-ups to monitor your progress.
This programme is fully funded and therefore FREE for all eligible participants.
You are eligible if you are:
- Over 75 years (over 65 years for Māori) and live within the Bay of Plenty DHB area
- Living in the community but not in residential rest home level care
- Unable to attend a community strength and balance class
- Unable to independently get out of a chair without having to push up from the arms of the chair.
You are not eligible if you are attending a community-based exercise programme or if you have a condition that prevents you from following the activities.
Fall prevention is important because
- Falls are the leading cause of injury in people over the age of 65 years
- Around one-third of generally healthy people aged 65 and older will have at least one fall each year
- Strength, flexibility, balance and reaction time are considered the most readily modifiable risk factors for falls
- People, even in their 90s, can improve their strength and balance to achieve stability and avoid falls.
Top tips to prevent a fall
- Make sure your carpets and rugs lie flat and are non-slip
- Keep walkways clear of clutter, i.e. electrical cables, magazines etc.
- Mop up spills in the kitchen and bathroom as they happen
- Make sure stairs are well lit
- Make sure your shoes and slippers fit well and have non-slip soles
- Have your vision checked regularly
- Have regular medical check-ups with your G.P.