The Otago exercise programme was developed to help prevent falls in the older adult. It was researched and developed by the Falls Prevention Research Group at the University of Otago Medical School.
The programme reduced the fall rate by 35 percent among program participants (with no gender bias) compared with those who did not take part. Participants aged 80 years and older who had fallen in the previous year showed the greatest benefit.
The programme consists of strengthening and balance exercises combined with a walking plan. No expensive equipment is needed and it can be done at home. The programme involves four home visits over the first two months, a home visit at 6 months and a telephone call every month between visits, concluding with a final home visit at 12 months.
More information about the trial, the programme and the exercises can be found here
In the UK Later Life provide training to people who wish to teach this programme. Their leaflet can be found here.
Some qualified Otago Leaders are registered on Later Lifes Falls Directory http://www.laterlifetraining.co.uk/falls-directory/ if you wish to try and get in contact with someone who provides the programme.
I hope you have found this article informative. If you have any questions on this article, or any questions about exercise and the over-50s please post a comment. By subscribing to this blog you will be informed of any new articles. You will not receive any spam email.
Helen Witcomb is a personal trainer in the Farnham area, please go here Whole Life Fitness, Personal Training for the over 50s. for more information. This will open a new browser window.