If you’re over the age of 65, reducing your risk of falling should be a serious priority. According to American Bone Health, falls affect more than 30% of this population and are the leading cause of death for this age group. While none of us can reverse the natural aging process, there are effective steps you can take to improve your balance and reduce your risk of falling.
As experts in the functioning of the musculoskeletal system, physical therapists are highly qualified to provide targeted balance training that can help prevent falls. At Arrow Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation, we’re dedicated to patient-centered care. For our elderly patients, that can mean making your physical therapy and balance training as fun as we possibly can.
Having fun with balance exercises
Balance training should be part of a broader physical therapy program to help you increase your range of motion, strengthen muscles and connective tissue, and have greater overall stability. Along with manual therapy and strengthening exercises, balance exercises are an essential part of this. While physical therapy does involve hard work, with a positive attitude and the right therapist, these commonly recommended balance exercises can be a fun part of your sessions:
- Single leg stance — Just like in grade school, standing on one leg helps improve your sense of balance and stability.
- Clock reach — This fun exercise involves pretending you’re the center of a clock and making times as guided by your therapist.
- Marching in place — It sounds simple, but it’s a great way to practice balancing while developing body awareness. For fun bonus points, use music.
- Shoulder rolls — These help with balance and arm mobility; most people enjoy this fun and easy movement.
- Wand balancing — Using a stick or cane, balance the end on your palm for as long as you can before it falls over. A great way to develop hand-eye coordination while balancing your body.
Specific treatments vary among each patient and therapist, so these are just examples of some of the fun exercises that can be recommended in a balance training session. The important thing is to find a therapist you are comfortable with and who provides a truly collaborative approach.
Compassionate and effective care at Arrow
We believe in matching patients with therapists who are the right fit for their needs and treatment goals. You should feel involved with the development of your care plan and in safe hands when you come to physical therapy.
To learn more about balance training and fall prevention, contact us today. We’ll be happy to help you schedule an initial appointment at the location that’s right for you.