Why Balance and Strength Are Important for Seniors

Despite what we would think, falling is not typical for aging adults. Aging does not necessarily increase the chance of injury.

And yet, it occurs at an alarming rate.

An estimated 36,000 people aged 65 and more per year lose their lives due to one or more falls.

A broken bone is a common result of a fall for the elderly. However, the risk of severe bone fractures is greatly amplified in the elderly due to conditions like osteoporosis.

Aging brings about a natural reduction in function, but it shouldn’t diminish the need to prevent falls. Maintaining stability and strength is all that’s needed.

The likelihood of falling can be drastically reduced by participating in physical therapy and engaging in strength and balance training.

Let’s have a look at how physiotherapy for the elderly can reduce the risk of falls and at some simple senior balance exercises that can boost the patient’s strength, stability, flexibility, and balance:

The Role of Physiotherapy in Reducing the Risk of Elderly Falls

Physiotherapy is used for more than just getting people back on their feet. Seniors can benefit from physiotherapy by gaining the stability, balance, and strength they need to avoid falls.

Many options exist for elderly individuals looking to engage in therapeutic activities.

Physiotherapists can help seniors at a clinic or home by creating a program to increase their strength and balance.

As a whole, physiotherapy is a massive help in enabling older people to continue living on their own.

Why Older People Need to Practice Balance Exercises

Balance problems can dramatically increase the likelihood of a fall. Exercises designed to enhance balance and stability can reduce the risk of injury from tripping or falling.

The hips, ankles, shoulders, and knees benefit from increased stability when your balance is good, allowing you to move more freely without requiring invasive procedures like knee replacements.

It also dramatically improves your reaction time in the case of a fall, reducing the likelihood of stumbling.

A better balance will lead to better long-term health in general, but especially for older persons in their daily lives.

Balance Workouts for Seniors

Here are some balancing exercises that will also help seniors increase their physical activity:

Single Limb Stance:

  1. Practice your balance by standing on one foot while clinging to the back of a chair.

  2. Try to maintain the position for as long as you can before switching feet.

Walk heel-to-toe:

  1. This strengthens and improves the balance of your legs.

  2. Step forward with your right foot until your heel meets your left foot’s tips.

  3. Put your left foot in front of your right one and put your weight on your heel before moving your weight to your toes. Do this 20 times.

Back Leg Raise:

  1. Stand behind a chair while holding the back, and slowly extend your right leg behind you without bending your knees.

  2. Keeping your leg in that position, hold it for a second, and then slowly bring it down to start the opposite leg.

Side rocking:

  1. Stand upright, feet hip-width apart, and firmly pressed into the ground.

  2. Shift your body’s center of gravity to your right foot, then slowly lift your left leg foot off the ground.

  3. Carefully replace your foot on the floor, switch feet, and perform the same on the opposite side. If you feel dizzy, you can use a chair for support.

Why Older Adults Need to Do Strength Exercises

Body strength has a significant role in preserving equilibrium. Loss of muscle mass can lead to fatigue and mobility issues, which can be remedied with strength training.

Prevention of falls in the elderly is aided by strengthening the muscles used for squatting, bending, and lifting, all of which can lead to increased stability.

Improved strength and stability will reduce the risk of falls.

Strength Training for Seniors

Along with balance exercises, seniors can perform these gentle strength training exercises to improve their core strength and prevent falls.

Wall Pushups:

  1. With your feet shoulder-width apart, stand approximately 3 feet away from a wall.

  2. Keep your back straight as you lean forward and rest your hands on the wall in front of you.

  3. Slowly squat down and then push yourself back up the wall.

Pelvic Tilts:

  1. Stand with one foot in front of you and one knee on the floor.

  2. Hold for 3 seconds while tightening your bottom and tilting your hips slightly forward.

  3. Hold the “hip-tilt” position for three full seconds.

  4. Repeat with the other side.

Shoulder Blade Squeeze:

  1. Sit up straight in a chair and place your hands in your lap.

  2. Pull your shoulder blades together in a gentle squeezing motion.

  3. Try to keep your shoulder low and avoid hunching over.

  4. Try to keep that position for the next three seconds.


  1. While seated, rest your arms in your lap.

  2. Raise your left leg so your knee and the back of your thigh are about three to four inches off the ground.

  3. Hold this position for three seconds before lowering your leg and repeating on the opposite side.

Improving Overall Health and Fall Prevention

Falling down can be a frightening experience for an older adult. It can cause serious harm, including the need for medical attention or even fatal outcomes.

A fall can be traumatic for the victim, causing them to lose confidence in their ability to move around and negatively impacting their quality of life.

Strength and balance training can help elders avoid falls and enhance their physical health in general.

Don’t wait until an accident happens – take action now and prioritize your well-being.

Get in touch with Atlas Physiotherapy & Health to schedule a consultation at our Markham physiotherapy clinic.

Let’s work together to create a safer and more confident future for our beloved seniors!