Accidental Falls

Publication Title: 
The Journals of Gerontology. Series B, Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences

This study examined the role of falls self-efficacy as a potential mediator of the exercise and fear-of-falling relationship. The study sample involved 256 community-dwelling older adults aged 70-92 years (M = 77.48, SD = 4.95) who were recruited from a local health care system in Portland, Oregon, and participated in either a Tai Chi (n = 125) or a stretching control (n = 131) exercise intervention, three times per week, for 6 consecutive months. Measures of falls self-efficacy and fear of falling were assessed at baseline and at 3-month and 6-month follow-ups.

Author(s): 
Li, Fuzhong
Fisher, K. John
Harmer, Peter
McAuley, Edward
Publication Title: 
International Journal of Aging & Human Development

Age-related reduction in musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, and central nervous system resilience can result in wide-ranging limitations in adaptive capacity associated with negative outcomes such as cognitive decline, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, mobility problems, and increased incidence of debilitating falls. This article reviews the benefits of both cognitive and physical activity within the broad context of multiple system resilience in adult aging. Research on a unique form of combined physical/cognitive exercise, Tai Chi Chuan, is presented.

Author(s): 
Hogan, Michael
Publication Title: 
The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences

BACKGROUND: The authors' objective was to evaluate the efficacy of a 6-month Tai Chi intervention for decreasing the number of falls and the risk for falling in older persons. METHODS: This randomized controlled trial involved a sample of 256 physically inactive, community-dwelling adults aged 70 to 92 (mean age, 77.48 years; standard deviation, 4.95 years) who were recruited through a patient database in Portland, Oregon. Participants were randomized to participate in a three-times-per-week Tai Chi group or to a stretching control group for 6 months.

Author(s): 
Li, Fuzhong
Harmer, Peter
Fisher, K. John
McAuley, Edward
Chaumeton, Nigel
Eckstrom, Elizabeth
Wilson, Nicole L.
Publication Title: 
Journal of Advanced Nursing

AIM: This paper reports a study to determine changes in the physical fitness (knee and ankle muscle strength, balance, flexibility, and mobility), fall avoidance efficacy, and fall episodes of institutionalized older adults after participating in a 12-week Sun-style Tai Chi exercise programme. BACKGROUND: Fall prevention has a high priority in health promotion for older people because a fall is associated with serious morbidity in this population. Regular exercise is effective in fall prevention for older adults because of improvements in strength and balance.

Author(s): 
Choi, Jung Hyun
Moon, Jung-Soon
Song, Rhayun
Publication Title: 
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

OBJECTIVES: To determine whether an intense tai chi exercise program could reduce fear of falling better than a wellness education (WE) program in older adults who had fallen previously and meet criteria for transitioning to frailty. DESIGN: Cluster-randomized, controlled trial of 48 weeks' duration. SETTING: Ten matched pairs of congregate living facilities in the greater Atlanta area. PARTICIPANTS: Sample of 291 women and 20 men, aged 70 to 97.

Author(s): 
Sattin, Richard W.
Easley, Kirk A.
Wolf, Steven L.
Chen, Ying
Kutner, Michael H.
Publication Title: 
Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics

The aim of this report is to investigate the effects of 8 weeks of intensive Tai Chi Chuan (TCC) training on physiological function and fear of falling (FOF) in the less-robust elderly. Forty-nine community-dwelling elderly, aged 60 or older, were classified randomly into a TCC training or control group. Physical performance measures (including one-leg stance, trunk flexion, and walking speed) and interviews were conducted before and after the intervention.

Author(s): 
Zhang, Jian-Guo
Ishikawa-Takata, Kazuko
Yamazaki, Hideo
Morita, Takae
Ohta, Toshiki
Publication Title: 
Physical Therapy

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: The concept of proper foot movement is always emphasized in practicing Tai Chi (TC). The purposes of this study were to describe the foot movement characteristics of TC and to compare duration of single- and double-limb support time during TC and during walking. SUBJECTS: Sixteen experienced TC practitioners participated in the study. METHODS: The participants' performance of a whole set of 42-form TC movements was recorded with 2 cameras. A motion analysis system was used to identify the supporting and stepping characteristics of the foot during the practice.

Author(s): 
Mao, De Wei
Hong, Youlian
Li, Jing Xian
Publication Title: 
BMC geriatrics

BACKGROUND: Falls are a significant public health problem. Thirty to fifty percent of the elderly of 65 years and older fall each year. Falls are the most common type of accident in this age group and can result in fractures and subsequent disabilities, increased fear of falling, social isolation, decreased mobility, and even an increased mortality. Several forms of exercise have been associated with a reduced risk of falling and with a wide range of physiological as well as psychosocial health benefits.

Author(s): 
Zeeuwe, Petra E. M.
Verhagen, Arianne P.
Bierma-Zeinstra, Sita Ma
Van Rossum, Erik
Faber, Marjan J.
Koes, Bart W.
Publication Title: 
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

OBJECTIVES: To determine the effects of moderate intensity group-exercise programs on falls, functional performance, and disability in older adults; and to investigate the influence of frailty on these effects. DESIGN: A 20-week, multicenter randomized controlled trial, with 52-week follow-up. SETTING: Fifteen homes for the elderly. PARTICIPANTS: Two hundred seventy-eight men and women (mean age +/- standard deviation, 85+/-6y). INTERVENTIONS: Two exercise programs were randomly distributed across 15 homes.

Author(s): 
Faber, Marjan J.
Bosscher, Ruud J.
Chin A Paw, Marijke J.
van Wieringen, Piet C.
Publication Title: 
Physical Therapy

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: It is important to determine the effect of adherence to a tai chi program on falls and related functional outcomes in older people. This study examined the effect of a community-based tai chi program on injurious falls, balance, gait, and fear of falling among people aged 65 years and older in Taiwan. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: In 6 rural villages in Taichung County, 1,200 subjects participated in the initial assessment. During a 1-year intervention period, all study villages were provided with education on fall prevention.

Author(s): 
Lin, Mau-Roung
Hwang, Hei-Fen
Wang, Yi-Wei
Chang, Shu-Hui
Wolf, Steven L.

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