Falls can be upsetting to people of any age, but can be extremely devastating to the senior population. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, one-third of people over the age of 65 and two-thirds ages 80 and over will suffer at least one fall a year.
The consequences of falls can cause significant suffering. Twenty to thirty percent of falls result in moderate to severe injuries, such as a reduced quality of life, loss of confidence in physical functions, fear of falling, social isolations, increased dependency on care givers, loss of mobility, broken or factored hips, and even death. Falls can also be costly to the senior or the family.
Tai Chi: Moving for Better Balance is an evidence-based fall prevention program that was designed to be used in community-based organizations. Accumulating evidence suggests that Tai Chi eight-form exercises is an effective means of improving balance, functional limitations, and strengthening muscles, which reduces the risk of falling. Tai Chi is a low-impact dance-like exercise that can be done in almost any location. It also helps to build confidence from the fear of falling, which is commonly found in a community of older adults.
Benefits of Tai Chi
Would you like to become a Tai Chi instructor?
Laura Gamino, R.N., M.P.H
Injury Prevention Coordinator, OU Medical Center