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Stepping On Workshops Help Belleville Residents Prevent Falls

Sessions help older adults gain confidence and reduce falls

 

April 4, 2019



One in every four adults over age 65 falls every year, and Wisconsin’s rate of falls is more than twice the national average. But falling is not normal for older adults and older adults can learn how to take steps to prevent falls.

Stepping On, a workshop offered in Wisconsin, teaches older adults to do just that. Research shows that adults who take the workshop gain confidence, reduce falls by over 30% and have fewer hospitalizations and emergency department visits.

Belleville will be offering Stepping On at the UW Health Belleville Family Medicine Clinic, 1121 Bellwest Blvd, Belleville, starting Thursdays, April 11 – May 23, from 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. It is for adults age 60 and over, who live in their own homes or apartments and do not rely on a walker, scooter, or wheelchair indoors most of the time. Call Frances Ramsey at (608) 890-5651 or email at steppingon@uwhealth.org to register. Scholarships are available upon request.

Falls can be physically, financially, and emotionally devastating. Fear of falling often limits older adults and results in reduced mobility and isolation. Stepping On workshops are delivered in seven two-hour weekly sessions. They are taught by two certified leaders; one is a health care or aging network professional and another is a peer leader who has already taken the workshop.

During the seven-week session, participants receive support from trained leaders and other workshop participants, learning strength and balance exercises from a local physical therapist, medications’ impact on falls from a local pharmacist, impact of poor vision as a falls risk from a local eye professional, safe footwear, home modifications, and community safety.

Reggie Regenold, past participant and peer leader for the workshop, states, “The workshops have given me a new way of being proactive in my exercises. I am stronger, more limber and my endurance is better with time.”

Stepping On was created at the University of Sydney and was brought to the U.S. and Americanized by a University of Wisconsin geriatric physician and falls expert. It is supported by the Wisconsin Institute for Healthy Aging, Safe Communities of Madison-Dane County, United Way of Dane County, and the Dane County Area Agency on Aging. There are over 200 workshops annually in Wisconsin that serve 2,000+ participants. The state’s goal is to reduce falls and put healthy options within reach for all Wisconsinites, and offering self-management workshops is one way to ensure that older adults have the support they need to remain independent and healthy.

For information on workshops in your area, visit http://www.safercommunity.net or call (608) 235-1957.

Safe Communities Madison-Dane County is a local non-profit coalition that brings together public and private sector partners to save lives, prevent injuries and make our community a safer place. We focus on projects and programs with a demonstrated track record of positive impact and success. Our core areas of work correspond to our community’s top causes of injury and injury-related death: Traffic Safety, Pedestrian Safety, Child Safety, Drug Poisoning Prevention, Falls Prevention, and Suicide Prevention. More than 350 organizations - including area businesses, law enforcement and fire/EMS services, neighborhoods, health care leaders, youth and senior-serving agencies - actively collaborate with us on programs to make Dane County a safer place to live, work and play. For more information visit http://www.safercommunity.net or call (608) 441-3060.

 
 

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