The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tells us that 25 percent of all seniors will suffer a fall each year, and many of them sustain brain damage, a hip fracture, or another injury that is so serious that they never regain their full independence. There are 28,000 fall-related deaths among seniors each year.
So yes, falls are very serious. We want to do all we can to avoid them! But if we yield to the temptation to spend all our time “safely” sitting on the couch, we set ourselves up for a downward spiral. Inactivity causes a rapid decline in a senior’s abilities. And that includes the ability to avoid falling. While most of us know that exercise is good for our hearts, brains and every other system of the body, we should also keep in mind that exercise is an important factor in preventing senior falls—the No. 1 factor, according to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.
The winter months make it a little harder to get our exercise, but it’s worth braving the elements or finding an indoor activity. Adding more exercise to your routine is a great New Year’s resolution, as well! Be sure to get an exercise “prescription” from your doctor before you change your routine.
Now it’s time for a little brain exercise! This month’s puzzle contains 20 words all having to do with fall-reducing fitness activities. Click here to download the puzzle.
Need a little help finding that last word? Click here for the solution to the puzzle.
Seattle and King County parks offer indoor and outdoor exercise opportunities for older adults. Find links to other fitness programs and fall prevention resources in 10 Years Standing Together to Prevent Falls or Four Small Changes in the September 2017 issue of AgeWise King County.