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Ohio Department of Aging launches initiative to prevent older adult falls

COLUMBUS, OH(WCMH) - The Ohio Department of Aging’s STEADY U Ohio initiative is inviting all Ohioans to help them take “10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls” to raise awareness of the prevalence of older adult falls and the simple things we can all do to remove hazards and reduce risk.

According to the Ohio Department of Aging, one in three Ohioans over age 60 will fall this year, and for many of them, that fall could lead to a life-changing injury or even death. A single fall can change the life not only of the person who falls, but also their family members, friends and neighbors.

“Older adult falls are a serious problem in Ohio, affecting one in three older Ohioans every year, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun helping people understand that falls are not a normal part of aging and most falls can be prevented,” said Beverley L. Laubert, director of the department. “’10 Million Steps’ is our challenge to Ohioans and our communities, businesses and other groups to be part of the effort that ends the epidemic of older adult falls.”

The Ohio Department of Aging created “10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls” because engaging in regular physical activity, such as walking 15-30 minutes each day, is one of the most basic things you and your loved ones can do to maintain muscle strength and flexibility, increase endurance and reduce your risk of falling.

There are three ways you can participate and help the STEADY U Ohio initiative reach its goal:

  • 1. Any time in September, take a one-mile walk and post a selfie to social media using the hashtags #PreventFalls and #10MStepsOH. Be sure to set your posts to “public” to ensure your effort is counted toward the state’s goal.
  • 2. Participate in a “10 Million Steps” group event in your community. Dozens of community organizations have partnered with STEADY U Ohio to sponsor local walking events throughout September with information and resources to help you and your loved ones prevent falls. Events and groups are fun, interactive and informational. Visit www.steadyu.ohio.gov to find one near you.
  • 3. Organize co-workers, club members, sports teams, classrooms, neighbors, congregation members or other groups to host your own “10 Million Steps” group walk. Register your group or event at www.steadyu.ohio.gov.

The Ohio Department of Aging says that this is the fourth year for “10 Million Steps.” Last year, 53 community partners hosted 57 walking groups or events in which 4,935 individuals of all ages walked more than 22,000 miles. At an average of 2,500 steps per mile, that’s 56 million steps taken in the name of falls prevention!

Visit the STEADY U Ohio website for more falls prevention tips and resources. While there, you can take an online falls risk assessment and learn about other community-based falls interventions available around the state.


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