In Oklahoma, falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries for adults over 65. Nearly 7,000 older adults are hospitalized, and more than 400 die from a fall each year. Hospital charges for acute care alone total more than $237 million annually.
According to the Oklahoma State Department of Health, studies show that a combination of behavior changes can significantly reduce falls among older adults. Health professionals recommend participation in physical activity regimen with balance, strength training, and flexibility components.
For these reasons, the Great Plains Literacy Council, the Southern Prairie Library System and the Oklahoma Healthy Aging Initiative or OHAI are collaborating to provide Tai Chi: Moving for better balance classes for older adults and their caregivers in July and part of August.
The program will be from 1-2 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays, beginning July 6 for six weeks at the Altus Public Library, 421 N. Hudson St. This class is offered at no cost and is open to the public, but pre-registration is required by visiting or calling the Altus Public Library at 580-477-2890.
The instructor will be the OHAI Education Specialist Rhonda David. This is a program of the Donald W. Reynolds Department of Geriatric Medicine at the University of Oklahoma and supported by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. This is also a health literacy outreach project of the Oklahoma Department of Libraries, with funding provided by the Library Services and Technology Act or LSTA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.