How to Improve Balance and Prevent Falls

Every year, one in four older adults will experience a fall. This can often lead to painful injuries such as hip fractures. In fact, falls are the leading cause of death in this age group, but if you are 65 or older, you don’t need to consider falls to be a natural part of the aging process. Improving your balance will greatly decrease your risk of experiencing a fall.

Tips for how to improve balance through exercise

As you age, the systems that prevent falls are also aging. Your vision, muscles, and central nervous system are all losing a small amount of function the older you become. Your reaction time to trip hazards is increasing as well. All of these factors combine to create a great risk of falling as you age. Here are some ways on how improve balance through exercise:

  • Aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming, or bicycling. This helps serve as gait training as well as increasing your stamina.
  • Lift weights to help strengthen your muscles. You can use hand weights, resistance bands, or weight machines.
  • Flexibility training such as stretching or yoga. Find a local class with other seniors who are interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  • Tai Chi for muscle strength and balance. This ancient Chinese practice has been shown to decrease the incidence of falls in older adults.

Before starting any exercise program for how to improve balance, you should consult your doctor. If you experience pain or dizziness after a new activity, stop and rest.

Tips for how to improve balance through training

Exercise is not the only way to improve your balance and avoid falls. This can also be accomplished through balance training activities that you can do as you go about your day. Some examples are:

  • Alternate balancing on one foot while waiting in line
  • Practice sitting and standing without using your hands for assistance
  • After you are used to taking walks, try switching to an uneven surface.

By combining exercise and balance training, you can help condition your body to avoid a nasty fall. If you are looking for help with getting started on a plan for how to improve balance, contact the physical and occupational therapy office at Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group. We can help develop a plan to keep you on your feet. If you do experience a fall, the physicians at Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group can help as well. Give us a call today.

Call (719) 632-7669

Recent Articles

  • Dr. Sung and PA first to pilot the xvision technology in Colorado

Doctors with X-Ray Vision

September 30th, 2020|

Doctors With X-Ray Vision Advanced Medical Technology | xvision™ Spine system  Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group is now offering a new standard of care in surgery! Dr. Roger Sung, MD and his Physician Assistant Kelsey [...]

  • surgery room where a doctor and his assistants prepare for a minimally invasive surgery

Minimally Invasive Surgery

September 28th, 2020|

Minimally Invasive Surgery For patients, 'minimally invasive surgery' means 'smaller incisions than traditional surgery.' Minimally invasive surgery is also known as a laparoscopic surgery, band-aid surgery, or keyhole surgery. At Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group, our doctors [...]

  • Senior couple discussing X-ray with doctor.

Spinal Fusion

September 27th, 2020|

Spinal Fusion Surgery Many Americans suffer from a number of back issues. Spine and back issues can include a spine deformity, instability, and weakness of the back, or a herniated disk. Moreover, many have [...]

Helpful Care Tips: Orthopaedic Self-Care Tips

September 25th, 2020|

Helpful Care Tips: Your body’s musculoskeletal system is a complex masterwork made up of thousands of moving parts that performs like a well-oiled machine. Whatever movements you make — walking, stretching, reaching, bending, flexing, [...]