Fall Prevention As We Age
Now more than ever, we are living longer lives. But as we age, our balance, strength and coordination diminish. If you are over 60, ask your doctor to check your sense of balance. Including balance, coordination and strength exercises into our daily fitness routine will help prevent falls and ensure we live longer, healthier and happier lives.
Here are some key exercises that will help strengthen your balance and coordination:
With your feet hip-width apart, stand in front of a step or a curb. Slowly bring your foot up to the step or curb and tap it. Next, return your foot to the floor. Continue 20 times and then switch feet.
Standing up straight with feet hip-width apart, slowly bring one leg up so that you are standing on one leg. Hold for 15 seconds. Feel free to hold onto a piece of furniture for support as you get stronger, you will not need this. Slowly lower your leg and switch legs. Perform 15 reps per leg.
Using a wall, this exercise will build strength. Stand an arm’s length from the wall. Keeping your feet here, laying your hands flat on the wall, and begin to slowly lean towards the wall. Hold for 3 seconds. Push yourself back to starting position slowly and until your arms are straight. Perform 20 reps.
Performing these exercises daily will strengthen your balance and coordination over time. The YMCA of Long Island also offers Moving For Better Balance program which is a FREE 12-week fall prevention program that uses the principles and movements of Tai Chi to improve balance and increase their confidence in doing everyday activities. Also, this month, check out this Fitness Challenge with daily exercises for fall prevention.