Poor Muscle Strength raises risk of a fall by 76%
In older adults, poor muscle strength increases the risk of a fall by 76% and those who have already had a fall are three times more likely to fall again. Strengthening and balance activities not only help to prevent this, but also help improve your mood, sleeping patterns, increase your energy levels, and reduce the risk of an early death.
An evidence review commissioned by Public Health England and the Centre for Ageing Better has found that muscle and bone strengthening and balance activities continue to have great health benefits for all adults, and suggests these are done at least twice a week alongside aerobic exercise.
Currently, only one in three men and one in four women are currently doing enough of the right types if exercise for healthy muscles and bones.
Activities found to have the most benefit for muscle and bone strengthening include ball games, racket sports, dance, Nordic walking and resistance training (usually training with weights but including body weight exercises which can be performed anywhere).
For those at risk of falls or fracture, supervised structured exercise is also recommended at a pace that suits the individual to help maintain independence and support healthy ageing.
Jess Kuehne from the Centre for Ageing Better, said “it’s clear that we need to give equal weighting to activities that boost muscle and bone strength and improve balance rather than simply focus on aerobic exercise.
“There is significant potential to make saving to health and social care services if we do more to promote muscle strengthening and balance activities and recognise their role in helping to keep people healthy and independent for longer, particularly as they age.
“Current statistics show that falls are responsible for around 95% of all hip fractures, costing the NHS more than £1 billion a year. For employers and the economy, musculoskeletal health conditions are the second most common cause of sickness in the UK, accounting for 30.8 million days lost in work.
Published by Backcare.org.uk in TalkBack Autumn 2018 issue available for download here
Full report available here
Also see ageing better here