Young at Heart Resources is committed to reducing the prevalence of falls and fall related injuries to Missouri’s older adults, while maximizing their independence and quality of life. We offer numerous Evidence Based Programs (EBPs) which offer proven ways to promote health and prevent disease among adults age 60 and older.  These programs are based on rigorous study and scientific evidence and are designed to lower the risk of chronic diseases and help prevent falls. These Health Promotion programs meet the current highest-level criteria for evidence based programs.

What Are The Benefits?

· Improved quality of life

· Increased self-efficacy in managing one’s health

· Increased or maintained independence, positive health behaviors, or mobility

· Reduced disability (fewer falls)

· Reduced pain

· Improved mental health

HEALTH AND WELLNESS PROGRAMS:

A MATTER OF BALANCE   

A Matter of Balance is designed to help reduce the fear of falling and to increase the activity levels of older adults who have concerns about falling.

Classes help participants learn to change their environment to reduce fall risk factors, promote exercise to increase strength and balance, set realistic goals for increasing activity, and view falls and fear of falling as controllable.  The classes are designed to benefit older adults who are at least 60 years of age, are ambulatory, community-dwelling and able to problem solve.

This program is offered in a two-hour, once-weekly class for 8 weeks, or twice weekly for 4 weeks, and is led by two certified coaches.

LIVING A HEALTHY LIFE (formerly the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program or CDSMP)

Living a Healthy Life is an effective self-management education program for people with chronic health problems.  The program specifically addresses arthritis, diabetes, and lung and heart disease, but it teaches skills useful for managing a variety of chronic diseases. This program covers topics such as: techniques to deal with problems associated with chronic disease, appropriate exercise, proper use of medications, communicating effectively with health professionals, nutrition, and how to evaluate new treatments. Workshops are facilitated by two trained leaders and are held in a community setting in a 2½ hour, once-weekly meeting for six weeks.

EXERCISE PROGRAMS:

TAI CHI FOR ARTHRITIS FOR FALL PREVENTION

TAI CHI originates from ancient China and is now practiced throughout the world as a very effective exercise for health, and it is adapted by the Arthritis Foundation of America.  Tai Chi is a graceful form of exercise that involves slow, focused movements and controlled breathing. It is a low-impact exercise that puts minimal stress on muscles and joints, making it suitable for many older adults.

Tai Chi has been proven to help prevent falls by improving balance and mobility, increasing flexibility and muscle strength, improving posture, and reducing the fear of falling.  Added benefits include relief from pain and stiffness, improved concentration, stress relief, improved heart and lung function, and integration of body and mind.

The program includes warm-up exercises, controlled breathing techniques, a set of 12 movement Tai Chi, and cool-down exercises. Classes may be offered once or twice weekly (depending on your area) and are taught by a board certified instructor.

ARTHRITIS FOUNDATION EXERCISE PROGRAM (AFEP)

AFEP is a community-based recreational exercise program developed by the Arthritis Foundation.  Trained AFEP leaders cover a variety of range-of-motion, flexibility, strength, balance and endurance-building activities, along with relaxation techniques and health education topics.  All of the exercises can be modified to meet participant needs.  The AFEP benefits include improved functional ability, decreased depression, and increased confidence in one’s ability to exercise.  Most classes are ongoing and meet twice weekly, or can be offered as an 8-10 week session.

WALK WITH EASE (WWE)

Whether you need relief from arthritis pain or just want to be active, this Arthritis Foundation program can help.  It is ideal for people with or without arthritis who want to make walking a daily habit.  The Walk with Ease program is a physical activity and self-management education program that can be done by individuals using the workbook on their own, or in a group led by a trained leader. The group format is a structured six-week program that meets twice weekly.