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Preventing falls and fractures in adults aged over 65.

Community Strength & Balance is an ACC funded initiative aimed at preventing falls and fractures in adults aged over 65.

Research has shown that when people do exercises to strengthen their leg and core muscles, their balance improves, and their risk of falls reduces by almost a third.

Sport Manawatū
Sport Manawatū


By participating in strength & balance classes you will increase your strength and balance, reduce your risk of falls and fall related injuries (e.g. broken hips), and continue to live an independent life.

How to become an ACC accredited class

If you run an exercise class for older people, or have been thinking of starting, we’d like to hear from you.

ACC, the Ministry of Health, District Health Boards, Primary Health Organisations, and Sport Manawatū are working together to develop and support, approved community strength and balance classes throughout New Zealand communities.

Sport Manawatū
Sport Manawatū

What are the benefits?

What are the benefits of becoming an approved community group strength and balance class?

You will be:

  • Part of a national network.
  • Given FREE training from your Lead Agency to support you to deliver approved community group strength and balance classes.
  • Given support to continue to meet the criteria.
  • Able to use the quality logo tick of approval and benefit from national promotion.
  • Linked to the local communities (GPs, nurses, physiotherapists, pharmacists, podiatrists) and other organisations involved in preventing falls in your region.
  • Joining a network of other like-minded professionals and organisations to share success, challenges, and ideas.
  • Benefiting from increased referrals to your exercise programme.

Paula Crowe

Active Communities Advisor – Strength and Balance
  • 021 765 679

FAQ’s for Participants

Why approved Strength and Balance Classes?
  • Falls are a common cause of injury for older people; but falls are not a normal part of aging and many falls are preventable.
  • Older people with muscle weakness and limitations affecting mobility are 3-5 times more likely to fall.
  • Multi-component community-based exercise classes which target strength and balance in older people can reduce the risk of falling by 29%.
Who can attend a class?

All New Zealanders who are 65+ and at risk of falling.

What will the class involve?

Classes are suited to the needs of the community they serve.

How do I find a class?

The MidCentral region have a range of classes to attend. The Live Stronger for Longer website has all the class locations and details.

Will I have to wear lycra to join in?

No, unless you want to of course! Comfortable clothes that you can move in and flat comfortable shoes are the only requirements.

Will I keep up?
  • You work at your own pace and ability; the instructor is always on hand for assistance.
  • Each class will be required to incorporate exercises that reduce falls and meet a set of nine criteria. Once the class can do these things, they will be entitled to carry the community group strength and balance endorsement ‘tick’.

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