Wellness Issue: Finding Balance

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Category: Beauty Articles

 

When a young kid loses his balance, he may fall—but he probably won’t break his hip. The same isn’t true of older adults, whose balance can become impaired with age and lead to serious injuries. (A 2006 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths and nonfatal injuries among adults over the age of 65.) Luckily, improving balance and mobility can lower risk of falling, which is just what the Safety and Gait Enhancement Program (SAGE) at Northwest Hospital and Medical Center’s Center for Medical Rehabilitation (one or two visits per week for four to eight weeks; COST?) aims to do. SAGE teaches older adults about strength, flexibility and balance, as well as other key skills—such as walking safely and selecting appropriate shoes—to help them remain physically independent. Participants practice these skills using Easy Streets Environments, life-sized replicas of city streets where they will encounter everyday obstacles like curbs, steps and slopes. The preventive program moves older adults into their later years with confidence in their stride and step.