Office of Preventive Health

Stepping On

 

Stepping On is an exciting, friendly and free community program aimed at preventing falls, encouraging active living and maintaining independence in older people. This program was developed by Lindy Clemson and Megan Swann and is now implemented statewide by NSW Health. It is considered to be one of the most effective falls prevention programs available and has been shown to reduce participants' risk of falling by 31% (Clemson et al 2004).

Stepping On is a 7-week program and gives individuals the skills and confidence to undertake their everyday activities and be physically active safely and without the fear of falling. Participants attend weekly two-hour group sessions, during which they learn about strength and balance exercises, safe footwear, medication management, vision, nutrition, moving safely in the community and reducing hazards in the home environment. After completing the program, participants are provided with individualised follow-up and may attend a booster session 2 months later.


Who can join the program

The Stepping On program is suitable for anyone who is:
  • 65 years and over
  • Living at home in NSW
  • Able to walk independently (with or without a walking stick)
  • Fearful of falling or has had a fall recently
This program is not suitable for people with dementia or progressive neuromuscular conditions.

 

Where and When is the program held?

The program is run throughout the year, usually during public school terms.
Group sessions are held at community venues across NSW. Most venues will be accessible by public transport and have car parking available.

 

Staying physically active is the single most important thing we can do to stay fit and independent as we get older. Physical activity is good for our bodies and our minds, and helps us get the most out of life.

Research shows that we can improve our health and reduce our risk of a fall by doing moderate physical activity for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week, and by incorporating balance and leg strength exercises into our daily routine.

 

To help you do this, NSW Health has developed the ‘Staying Active and On Your Feet’ booklet which contains valuable information and ideas for balance and strength exercises. You can access the booklet by clicking on the picture or visiting this website: https://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/your-active-and-healthy-guide/.

 

If you are not currently doing any physical activity, you may also want to join an exercise program in your local area. You can find one by clicking on this link: http://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/program/ and entering your suburb name.
 

© 2016 South Western Sydney Local Health District
Last Updated: 08 November, 2019
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