Prevent a Fall! Exercise to Build Balance, Strength and Muscle

Jeff Cooper, MPT ( is my physical therapist (Newbury Park, California) who I met last year after I suffered a moderate stroke which took away my peripheral vision and impaired my sense of balance.  It was at that time I moved in with Bob and Lisa.  Lisa brought me to a medical supply store to purchase a walker, wheelchair and shower seat to keep me from falling.  I detested all that equipment and wanted to regain my independence as soon as possible.

Henry walking with Jeff to improve his balance.

My internist provided me with a prescription for rehabilitation physical therapy and I began working with Jeff.  Jeff and his staff are dedicated professionals who help people like me become strong again after an injury.  I cannot thank them enough for traveling with me along the road to my successful recovery.  Jeff explained the best things I could do to prevent falling and regain my sense of balance were to commit to a regular exercise program, have my medicines reviewed regularly by my doctor, have my vision checked, and live in a home free of trip hazards.

I’ve enjoyed a brisk, five-mile walk almost every day of my entire adult lifc, so exercising with an expert physical therapist is something I look forward to twice a week.  With Jeff’s help, I’ve improved my balance and strengthened my trunk muscles.  My walker, wheelchair and shower seat have a new home in the garage (and they can stay there!)

I encourage everyone to exercise safely with the approval of their doctor BEFORE suffering a fall or a stroke, or simply losing their fitness. I cannot emphasis enough that each of us is responsible for maintaining our health at every phase in life, even at 100, to the extent it is safely possible.  It keeps us healthy, reduces health care costs, and makes us feel better (even when we’re not exercising.)  A bonus is exercise increases my metabolism, allowing me to indulge in my favorite desserts, which you already know are chocolates and doughnuts!

All those years of walking have paid off. Lisa says, “I’d like a pair of legs like that, Henry!”

Get started now on your doctor-recommended path to physical fitness, regardless of your age.  There’s a lot of life to experience, despite its hardships which with I’m personally acquainted, believe me.  It’s never to late to start.  Just get out there any way you can and LIVE!

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