For an at home fall reduction workout plan click HERE.
Reducing the risk of falls is incredibly important for both seniors and individuals with mobility impairments. If a senior is able to reduce their fall risk, they will improve their quality of life greatly, and potentially avoid permanent disability. Many seniors are developing or have already developed osteoporosis or a weakening of the bones. This is why reducing the risk of falls is incredibly important for this population. Older adults that have osteoporosis may be one fall away from breaking a hip, knee, or shoulder joint.
One of the key aspects of maintaining proper balance is your static balance. Static balance simply describes the ability to hold a position without moving. Static balance is important when it comes to being able to stand straight up for long periods of time, without fatiguing. In addition to this, static balance also helps you to build a base for your dynamic or moving balance. If you can’t stand well in place without moving, you likely will have a tough time when you start to add more dynamic actions in your daily life. The great news is that there are multiple ways you can practice your static balance. Below are a few easy static balancing exercsies for seniors to reduce falls.
- Simply stand in place with your feet hip width apart, holding good posture with your body. If you need to make this trickier, you can bring your feet together, narrowing the base. Although basic, being able to hold your body up in place takes a large amount of static balance.
Single Foot Hold
- This one will test your balance! Shift all of your weight onto one foot, bringing then free foot completely in the air. Try your best to stand on the single foot without moving. In addition to a great balancing exercise for seniors, this also is a great single leg strengthening workout, too. Make sure to repeat on both sides.
Heel to Toe Hold
- For a heel to toe hold you will put your feet in a “tightrope walk” position. You can draw out a line on the ground, or put a piece of light string in front of you to use as feed back. In this heel to toe position with your feet, try your best not to sway your arms, remaining stable throughout. Make sure to repeat on both sides.
Balance Pad Hold
- If you have not purchased a balance pad yet, and need one, click here: Otherwise, you can use a piece of foam or a folded towel put on the ground as well. Once you have your balance device, simply step on the towel or pad, and try not to move! Ideally, start with your feet hip width apart, and slowly bring your feet in as you get better.
Split Stance Hold
- Last but not least is the split stance hold. This will involve you taking a large step forward, so your feet are spread wide, one foot in front of the other, in a split stance. This one is challenging on your balance, as well as your hip and ankle mobility. Make sure to repeat this on both sides.
These exercises are a great place to start! As mentioned, we linked a YouTube video of the static balancing exercises for seniors above. Make sure to check that out if you get confused. Best of luck on your balance, and keep working hard!
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