April ‘Falls’ Day – Falls Prevention

Posted March 31st, 2011 by Kirrian Steer and filed in Uncategorized

April 1st is April Falls Day, a day to promote falls prevention. Staying active is the most important thing you can do to stay fit and independent as you get older. As we age we lose our sense of balance and muscle strength which can increase our risk of falls.

Being physically active keeps our muscles strong and our joints mobile, improving our balance. Physical activity keeps both your mind and body healthy and is the most effective way to stay independent and reduce your risk of a fall.

Research shows that participating in at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise most days of the week, including balance and strength exercises can reduce your risk of falls substantially.1

There are a number of activities which can help you maintain or improve your strength and balance some include;

-          Yoga

-          Tai chi

-          Lawn bowls

-          Pilates

-          Dancing

-          Group exercise classes

-          Gym sessions

Keeping active and fit not only reduces your risk of a fall but also keep you mobile and active allowing you to continue doing things you like to do.

Other things that may affect your risk of having a fall include;

-          Changes in vision. As we age our vision can deteriorate; you may not see as clearly, less able to judge distance and depth, or adjust to sudden changes in light. It is important to get your eyes checked.

-           Some medications can increase your risk of falls. Discuss your medications with your Doctor, particularly if you’re experiencing drowsiness, unsteadiness, dizziness or confusion.

-           Feet can change shape and lose some feeling. If your feet are swollen and sore it can make it difficult to walk, and some footwear such as slippers can increase your risk of stumbling or tripping. Have your feet checked and wear firm, flat shoes.

-          Diet is also important not getting enough vitamin D can affect your bone and muscle strength as this vitamin helps our bodies absorb calcium from food.2

Ask your osteopath about how you can reduce your risk of falls.


  1. http://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/staying_active
  2. http://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/fall_proof_yourself