Friday, September 24, 2010

Balance and the Elderly [Joe Moore Letter to the Editor]

“To the Editor: Re “Staying on Balance, With the Help of Exercises” (Retirement section, Sept. 16): Not only does loss of balance make us susceptible to life-threatening falls, but it also threatens our independence. Loss of balance and mobility is the main reason many adults go into assisted living facilities. And once people lose their independence, declines in health and fitness levels tend to become more rapid. As we’ve become an increasingly mechanized, sedentary society, people have lost their full range of body movements. But many health clubs offer programs that are intended to help people reawaken the sensory responses that keep them on their feet. And basic balance work can be incorporated into most resistance training and cardio routines. Balance is just one example of how exercise plays a critical role in healthy aging. Be sure to ask for instructors certified to teach balance, and always ask why an exercise is being done.”

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