Falls, Falls Prevention and the Role of Physiotherapy and Exercise: Perceptions and Interpretations of Italian-Born and Australian-Born Older Persons Living in Australia
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Exercise programmes are effective in reducing falls but few older people consider doing an exercise programme for falls prevention. This paper examines older people’s perceptions and experiences of falls, physiotherapy and exercise. Individual interviews were conducted with Australian-born and Italian-born older persons who had =1 fall in the past 12 months and completed a community-based physiotherapy programme. Although preventing further falls was considered important, participants were unsure whether falls were preventable. Few described evidence-based approaches such as exercise or medication reviews as strategies to prevent falls. Most participants thought that physiotherapy and exercise were beneficial in improving physical function. A clear explanation on the role of exercise for falls prevention, that many falls are preventable, and understanding of personal motivating and de-motivating factors for exercise for falls prevention are important for clinicians to consider in engaging this group of older people.
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