Ohioans go the extra mile to support falls prevention awareness

Press Staff Writer

        Throughout the month of September, Ohioans walked a grand total of 55,250,000 steps in support of falls prevention awareness, vastly exceeding the goal of the Ohio Department of Aging’s (ODA’s) annual “10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls” campaign.
        This year’s final tally was the highest total for the campaign since before the COVID-19 pandemic.
        “At ODA, we’re grateful to every Ohioan who literally went the extra mile in support of this campaign by lacing up their walking shoes and getting their steps in,” said ODA Director Ursel J. McElroy. “We also appreciate the organizations across the state that put in the time and the effort to host their own walking events as well as the continued support of aging initiatives by Gov. Mike DeWine and his administration.
        “All of these contributions helped us crush our goal of 10 million steps and placed a spotlight on the importance of doing all we can to prevent falls, which can be life-altering for older Ohioans.”
        Falls are not considered a normal part of aging, but they are the leading cause of injury among older Ohioans. One in three people age 65 and older fall each year.
        However, most falls can be prevented. Regular exercise, like walking 15-30 minutes each day, is one of the many ways people can lower their risk.
        Created in 2015, ODA’s 10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls campaign is held during Falls Prevention Month each September to encourage Ohioans of all ages to walk at least one mile, either in a group or as an individual, for essential exercise and as an opportunity to learn about other things they can do and local resources available to help prevent falls.
        This year, 25 walking groups, comprised of 5,580 participants, walked a combined total of 22,100 miles in related events – that’s the equivalent of walking around the perimeter of Ohio nearly 20 times.
        In addition to walking solo, individuals could also contribute by viewing any of four falls prevention webinars produced by ODA and its STEADY U Ohio partners. These webinars remain available for on-demand viewing at aging.ohio.gov/10millionsteps.
        ODA offers these tips to help prevent falls:
        • Get at least 15 minutes of simple exercise, like walking, each day.
        • Eat a balanced diet and stay hydrated.
        • Ask your doctor or other health care provider for a falls risk assessment, including a review of whether any of the medications you take may increase your risk for falling.
        • Obtain and use a cane or walker if you have trouble walking or standing for long periods.
        • Look around your home for falls risks, such as loose rugs, poor lighting and clutter.
        • Have grab bars professionally installed in your bathroom.
        • Find more falls prevention tips and resources at steadyu.ohio.gov.
        • Contact your local area agency on aging at 419-382-0624 or 1-866-243-5678 to learn about balance and exercise programs in your community.
        About ODA – The Ohio Department of Aging serves and advocates for the needs of Ohioans age 60 and older, as well as their families, caregivers and communities. Programs include home and community based long-term supports and services, as well as initiatives to promote health and wellness throughout the lifespan. Visit aging.ohio.gov to learn more.


The Press

The Press
1550 Woodville Road
Millbury, OH 43447

(419) 836-2221

Email Us

Facebook Twitter

Ohio News Media Association