Former nurse Chris Clow from Bognor Regis has been living with Meniere’s disease since the early 1970s.
The condition affects the inner ear and can result in hearing loss, as well as balance issues. For the last six years he has benefited from having hearing dog Belle living with him and his wife, but his concerns about falling meant he was looking for some extra support.
“I have had three or four falls in the last few years, a couple of times in the garden and once on the beach. I thought if there was a way of lessening that happening, why not go and see if it works.” Chris Clow
He signed up for Arun Wellbeing’s Falls Prevention and Tai Chi course. The course, aimed at people who are 65 or over and who have a concern about falling, begins with an awareness workshop that aims to help build confidence and reduce the risk of falling. This is then followed by eight weeks of Tai Chi to build strength and balance.
The exercises can provide huge benefits in terms of helping to reduce the risks of falls in older people.
“It has done a lot of good, and the fact I am able to balance and prevent myself from falling has also instilled a sense of confidence in myself. I am less worried, I am aware, but less afraid. I’m a lot more confident going out and about. I would recommend it to anybody, because I fully believe you will see an improvement. It’s not going to stop you falling, but you might not fall as often.” Chris Clow
"While Chris benefited from a falls prevention programme, there are a number of exercises to improve muscle strength and balance that can easily be done in the home such as the Super Six. The temptation can be to stay snug inside during the colder months. However keeping active is important for older people – not only does it make you feel better but it can also help prevent falls.” Daniel MacIntyre, the county council’s Public Health Lead for Falls Prevention
A suite of videos have been created, offering top tips to help people stay independent in later life.
The videos have been designed to provide information on the range of equipment available to support older people, struggling with everyday tasks.
Some of the videos can be found below, alternatively you can watch the whole collection via our YouTube channel.