September is National Older Americans Fall Prevention Month, and the Ohio Department of Aging is hosting the second annual 10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls event on National Falls Prevention Awareness Day, September 22.
Last year, 57 different organizations sponsored community events, and statewide more than 4,400 Ohioans walked approximately 5,300 miles. That’s more than 13.2 million steps taken in the name of falls prevention.
More information about how you can get involved is available on the 10 Million Steps flyer and the STEADY U website. If you plan an event, please register it on the STEADY U website. Pictures of individuals and groups adding their steps toward the 10 million goal can be posted to social media using the hashtags #PreventFalls and #10MStepsOH. Your steps can help create awareness and prevent falls, regardless of the number of participants.
Falls among older Ohioans have reached epidemic proportions; one in three older adults will fall this year, and falls are the leading cause of emergency room visits, hospitalizations and deaths among our elders. A single fall can change the life not only of the person who falls, but also his or her family members who may become a caregiver for their loved one. The good news is that falls are not a normal part of aging, and most falls can be prevented.
Walking is one of the most essential exercises we can do to maintain strength, endurance and flexibility as we age, and a group fitness walk is a great way to promote falls prevention. The Area Agency on Aging staff will be walking September 22. Will you?