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Promoting good balance: encouraging older adults to undertake activities that improve balance by Lucy Yardley, PhD, and Chris Todd, PhD

Poor balance, leading to falling, can pose a major problem in later life. Around one in three older people fall each year, and 10% of these are seriously injured, many never fully recovering. The risk of falling can also lead to fear, restriction of activity, and loss of independence. The costs of caring for people who fall have been estimated at $20 billion a year in the United States alone, and are forecast to triple over the next 50 years. Fortunately, there is now good evidence that teaching older people how to undertake “strength and balance training” can reduce their risk of falling.

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