As we age, we begin to lose muscle tone and as a result, our balance can become impaired. In fact, falls are the leading cause of death from injury among people 65 years and older. Don’t let any of this discourage you. There are so many exercises that you can do to help improve and sustain your mobility and balance as you get older.
Here are some of our exercise tips that you can do from home:
· Heel-to-toe standing/walking. This exercise will improve your overall balance and coordination. For safety, lightly balance your fingertips on a counter or railing. Stand heel-to-toe (one foot behind the other) and bend your knees slightly for 10 seconds at a time. Repeat five times. You can vary this exercise by pretending to walk a tight rope. Walking slowly, place one foot directly in front of the other, heel to toe as you walk forward.
· Knee raises. Again, place your fingertips on a sturdy surface for balance. Lift one knee up to hip level and hold this position for five seconds. Do the same exercise with the other leg as well. Try to get at least five repetitions on each side.
· No hands, sit and stand. Grab a chair. Cross your hands over your chest and practice using your leg muscles to sit and stand
back up. Make sure to keep your feet flat on the ground and use your leg muscles --- not your lower back--- to sit and stand. This exercise will strengthen you lower body, which is important for activities like getting into and out of a car, sitting down in a chair or toilet, etc.
For more helpful information on preventing falls, you can visit The Falls Prevention Program website here: https://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/assets/pdf/Falls_Prevention_Home_Exercises.pdf
Inter Valley Health Plan hosts classes regularly on health and vitality. For a full list of classes in your area, please visit https://www.ivhp.com/forhealthandliving
Article From Inter Valley Health Plan