As we age, our bodies become more likely to develop health conditions, including deterioration in muscle strength, joints, eyesight and hearing.

Any deterioration can result in an increased risk of falling.

Maintaining physical activity can support our bodies and reduce our risk of falling. Activities focussing on strength and balance such as carrying heavy bags, tai chi, yoga and gardening will help build muscle strength.


Somerset Activity and Sports Partnership (SASP) are currently running a campaign called Stronger4Longer, focusing on encouraging strength and balance in those over the age of 50. You can fine out more at Somerset Activity & Sports Partnership – Stronger 4 Longer.

Benefits of keeping active

  • Maintains healthy weight
  • Maintains social connections
  • Improves mental health
  • Maintains independence
  • Reduces risk of injury


  • 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week (swim, walk, cycle)
  • Strength building twice a week (gym, yoga, carry heavy bags)
  • Improving balance twice a week (dance, bowls, tai chi)
  • Avoiding long periods of inactivity

Falls Prevention Classes in the Community

Falls prevention classes are evidence based which will support and enable you to improve your strength and balance and help to reduce your risk of having a fall.

If you are concerned about your balance or have noticed that you are becoming less mobile, Age UK Somerset run Stay Strong Stay Steady activity classes across Somerset. To find out more visit Age UK – Stay Strong, Stay Steady sessions.

Other factors

Medications can also contribute to the risk of falling. It is important to speak to your health professional if you experience any side effects.

It is important to have regular eye examinations, medication reviews and to seek support for any underlying issues.

There are many things we can do to reduce our risk of falling around the home, some of these include:

  • Wearing appropriate well-fitting footwear
  • Identifying trip hazards such as wires and rugs
  • Removing excess clutter
  • Knowing where your pets are when moving.

Our Somerset Fall Stop Leaflet has lots of tips on staying safe from falls and local contact numbers for organisations that may be able to support you. To order a copy for yourself or someone you know please email us at publichealth@somerset.gov.uk.


There may be simple modifications you can make to your home to reduce your risk of falling or enable you to access support should you have a fall at home. For more information visit Somerset Council – Equipment to help you.

Key messages

  • It is never too late to start or make a change
  • A little movement is better than none
  • Making a small change can lead to significant improvements
  • Invest in yourself to reduce your risk of falling

Last reviewed: January 15, 2024 by Kailani

Next review due: July 15, 2024

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