Moving for a better balance
Moving For Better Balance is a 12-week, falls prevention program, evidence-based, instructor-led group program designed to improve strength, mobility, flexibility, and balance through the therapeutic movements of Tai Chi, a graceful form of exercise and deep breathing.
Did you know- Each year on the first day of fall, national organizations from the Falls Free Coalition and the National Council on Aging (NCOA) join together for National Falls Prevention Awareness Day, a day of action to help raise awareness and prevention of falls.
The program is delivered twice a week for 12 weeks and includes a component of at-home practice each week for participants to reap the benefits of falls prevention. Moving For Better Balance is led by a qualified instructor and teaches an eight-form routine of Tai Chi-based movements modified specifically for falls prevention.
• Moving For Better Balance works to improve balance, muscle strength, flexibility, and mobility to enhance overall physical health, which leads to better functioning in daily activities.
• Moving For Better Balance has been shown to improve balance, muscle strength, flexibility, and mobility. The program may also result in better mental health, improved memory and cognition, increased self-esteem, and less social isolation.
• Research by the Oregon Research Institute shows that among older adults participation in Tai Chi-based programs like Moving For Better Balance may reduce the risk of falling by 55 percent. [SITE] Li, F., Hammer, P., Fisher, K. J., McAuley, E., Chaumeton, N., Eckstrom, E., & Wilson, N. L. (2005). Tai Chi and fall reductions in older adults: a randomized controlled trial. The Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, 60(2), 187-194.
• One out of three adults 65 and older falls each year. (CDC)
• By 2013, the direct medical costs for falls related injuries in older adults were $34 billion. (CDC)
• Every 14 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall; every 29 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall-related injury. (CDC)
• In 2013, 2.5 million nonfatal falls among older adults were treated in emergency departments and more than 734,000 of these patients were hospitalized. (CDC)
• Chronic conditions such as heart disease may contribute to impaired balance and an increased risk for falling. According to the CDC, each year more than 1.5 million Americans will have a stroke or heart attack.
• Research has shown that Tai Chi-based programs like Moving For Better Balance may aid rehabilitation for adults age 45 or older with heart disease.
Taylor-Piliae, R. E., Silva, E., & Sheremeta, S. P. (2012). Tai Chi as an adjunct physical activity for adults aged 45 years and older enrolled in phase III cardiac rehabilitation. European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 11(1), 34-43.
Moving For Better Balance was developed by Fuzhong Li, PhD at the Oregon Research Institute with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The National Council of Young Men’s Christian Association of the United States of America (“YMCA of the USA”) are committed to supporting healthy lifestyles through the Moving For Better Balance program but do not guarantee any specific outcomes for program participants.