Falling

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I recently worked with a client in her 90's who sustained a fracture from a fall. It wasn't her first fall, or her first fracture, and she asked her doctor what she could do to keep from falling again.

Her doctor told her the reason she was falling was that she wouldn't accept her age. He then told her that what she needed to do was get up in the morning, very slowly, look at herself in the mirror under lots of light and say "I am an old lady, I am an old lady, I am an old lady, and I will act my age."

Shocking. And total motivation to keep doing the work I do. Aging is inevitable but falling isn't. Balance is dependent on the visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive systems. Our vision helps us see where we are in space, our vestibular and proprioceptive systems help us sense and feel where we are in space. Stress and anxiety, poor movement patterns, lack of sleep and decreased body awareness over time are some of the things that can make it difficult to sense and feel where we are in space, which could eventually lead to a fall.

I work with clients to help them improve and feel their movement patterns, to increase stability, mobility and breathe more fully, which can lead to better balance and reduced risk of falling. One client reports that she is more stable and less nervous when taking a shower, another says she's now better able to feel her feet on the ground. She added that this not only makes her feel more steady but she can now look up and see the world around her when she walks.

Improving balance and preventing falls is possible, at any age.