Balance Training

Balance Training

Bad falls are a constant worry for seniors and others who have physical challenges. And those worries are not unfounded. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related deaths and serious health problems in the U.S.

Improving your walking skills — technically known as your “gait” — and your balance are interrelated challenges. Physical therapy helps you master these skills to decrease your risk of injury, while at the same time increasing your confidence and independence.

DID YOU KNOW…

  • 1/3 of people over 65 fall ANNUALLY.
  • The #1 reason someone over the age of 75 visits his/her Doctor is “IMBALANCE”.
  • 95% of hip fractures are caused by FALLS.
  • Every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the E.R. for a Fall-Related Injury.
  • 53% of adults discharged for fall related hip fractures will fall again within 6 months.
  • Falls account for 40% of all nursing home admissions.
  • 1 out of 5 patients with a hip fracture die within ONE year after injury.
  • Every 29 minutes, an older adult dies after a fall.
  • 2.3 million Fall injuries are treated in the E.R. ANNUALLY.
  • Fall victims released from the E.R. rarely receive fall prevention training or treatment to prevent future falls.
  • The average cost of a non-injury E.R. fall visit = $17,463.
  • The medical cost of falls is estimated at $28.2 Billion, annually.

Please, speak to a member of our team if you or someone you love is at risk for falls.

What are the benefits of balance and gait training?

Balance and gait are inextricably linked because they tend to impact one another. Even if you don’t think you’re in danger of falling over, that “running out of steam” while walking that you are attributing to aging muscles could be something else. The problem might actually be slowing reflexes, which make moving around seem more strenuous than it is. By the same token, poor posture and gait can throw off those reflexes.

In fact, the balance and gait systems both rely to some extent on a complex number of body systems that include the inner ear, the eyes, the joint-muscle-nerve system, and of course cognitive functions. Therapy that improves gait and balance works with all of these systems to keep them functioning in harmony.

Gait and balance training has a range of benefits, with avoiding injuries being at the top of the list. Beyond lessening your chances of falling or feeling dizzy, you’re also more likely to feel confident with your footing. In addition, those aches and pains from poor posture are likely to decrease as well.

What does balance and gait training entail?

First, we will evaluate your gait to determine potential problems with strength and posture. Simple movements to test balance are also part of the assessment. Together, these basic evaluations point us in the direction of what to focus on in terms of therapy.

Hip, knee and ankle weakness often leads to balance problems, as does poor posture. Strength and flexibility movements can help counteract these problems. Examples of these are simple leg lifts while seated in a chair, or “knee marching.” We may also practice standing on one leg, walking heel-to-toe, or tracking the movement of your thumb with your eyes as you move it in various positions.

Ready to “balance” your life again?

With our dedicated team of physical therapists behind you, you’ll regain confidence in navigating challenging terrain and learning how to avoid dizzy spells. You may even be able to leave that cane or walker behind! Contact us today at FYZICAL Therapy and Balance Centers Midvale, UT for an evaluation or Falls Risk Assessment so you can regain your independence as soon as possible and start living your life.