Keeping your balance on National Seniors Day

October 1 is National Seniors Day

October 1, 2013

For many seniors, falling can have a significant impact on their life, ability to live independently, and can even result in death. Falls are also one of the leading causes of preventable injuries in Ontario for seniors (65 years or older), which means that there are steps seniors can take to stay on their feet and avoid hospital visits.

“The main things seniors can do to prevent falls are to watch their step, check their medication, keep active, and speak up about dizziness,” says Jane Harrington, injury prevention specialist, LHSC. “It’s important to understand that dizziness and falls are not a natural part of aging.”

A well-rounded and simple exercise plan can help seniors stay healthy. Incorporating muscle and bone strengthening activities with aerobic exercises and balance activities can make a big difference in their physical health.

Examples of physical activity:

  • Muscle and bone strengthening activities: Wall pushups, lifting light weights, stair climbing, and tai chi.
  • Aerobic (cardiovascular) activities: Walking, dancing, gardening, and swimming.
  • Balance activities: Tai chi, stretching, and yoga.

“Depending on their physical health, seniors should consult their physician before any new exercise plan and start slowly,” adds Harrington.

Sources and further information: Elgin St. Thomas Public Health