What type of exercises should older adults engage in to improve fall efficacy and physical fitness related to falling?

Author: Sohee Shin1, Burkhard Wuensche2
1 School of Exercise and Sport Science, University of Ulsan, Ulsan, Korea.
2 Department of Computer Science, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.
Conference/Journal: J Exerc Rehabil
Date published: 2023 Aug 22
Other: Volume ID: 19 , Issue ID: 4 , Pages: 198-207 , Special Notes: doi: 10.12965/jer.2346276.138. , Word Count: 173

This study aimed to examine the effects of exercise interventions developed over the past 10 years to prevent falls among older adults. Cochrane, PubMed, and Embase databases were systematically searched on November 3, 2022, using the following keywords: "elderly" or "aged" and "fall prevention exercise" and "randomized controlled trial." A total of 918 articles were retrieved, and finally, 18 studies were included in the meta-analysis. main conclusions were as follows: fall prevention exercises showed moderately positive effects on balance, gait, mobility, physical function, lower limb power, and strength, but low effects on proprioception, vision, and reaction speed. The effect sizes were highest when the intervention period was 1-24 weeks, time was 31-60 min, and frequency was thrice per week. Place of intervention (home, community, laboratory) and age (>75 years, <75 years) showed similarly moderate effect sizes. A combined program that includes balance, co-ordination, and resistance exercises is appropriate to improve fall-related fitness and fall efficacy in community-dwelling older individuals.

Keywords: Community-dwelling older adults; Exercise; Fall prevention; Fall-related physical fitness; Meta-analysis; dance; tai chi

PMID: 37662531 PMCID: PMC10468295 DOI: 10.12965/jer.2346276.138