Fear of falling? It's a matter of balance
If you are a senior, and have a fear of falling, you are not alone. Studies indicate that up to half of community dwelling older adults experience fear of falling. Many respond to this concern by curtailing activities. This in turn can lead to loss of muscle strength, an increased risk of isolation, depression and anxiety, and increases your risk of falling. In short, fear of falling can actually contribute to falling!
The good news is that the majority of falls are preventable. The even better news is that there are strategies you can learn to improve your balance, and take control of this problem.
A Matter of Balance is an evidence-based program offered through Stanford University and taught by certified instructors. The Westlake Center for Community Services will be hosting this class on Mondays, 9-11 a.m., beginning March 13 for a total of 8 weeks. Participants will learn to view falls as controllable, set realistic goals, change their environment to reduce risk factors and exercise to increase strength and balance.
RSVP's are necessary and space is limited. Call 899-3544 by March 6 to reserve your spot. Since the program is grant funded, it is able to be offered at no cost.
According to an informational pamphlet, after completing A Matter of Balance:
- 97% of participants are more comfortable talking about fear of falling
- 97% feel comfortable increasing activity
- 99% plan to continue exercising
- 98% would recommend Matter of Balance to their friends.
For a complete schedule of events and activities at the Westlake Center for Community Services, visit www.cityofwestlake.org/519/Newsletter, or come pay us a visit. We are located at 29694 Center Ridge Road.
I am the Director of the Community Services Department for the City of Westlake. I am also a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor.