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Stepping On

Falls Prevention Program



Who Should Attend?

Subjects Covered

Does the Program Replace Existing Programs and Treatments?

How was the Program Developed?

How was the Program Evaluated and What were the Results?

Wisconsin Contacts for Information

Workshops (Exit DHS)

Additional Fall Prevention Information



In Wisconsin, falls are the leading cause of injury and deaths among older adults. Of those that fall, 20-30% suffer injuries that reduce mobility and independent living. Wisconsin ranks in the top 5 states in the United States in the number of deaths due to falls. The cost of falls that result in injuries that need hospitalization exceeds $237 million annually. 

Stepping On is a program that empowers older adults to carry out health behaviors that:

  • reduce the risks of falls,

  • improve self-management, and

  • increase quality of life.

In local community-based workshops that seniors attend once a week for 7 weeks, older adults develop specific knowledge and skills to prevent falls.

Who Should Attend?

People who are:

  • at risk of falling,

  • have a fear of falling or

  • who have fallen one or more times.

Workshops are led by two trained leaders, a health professional and a peer who themselves meet the criteria for the class and has already taken the class.

Subjects Covered Include:

  • Improving balance

  • Strength

  • Home environmental safety

  • Vision

  • Medication review

It is how the program is taught that makes it so effective. Classes are highly participative, where mutual support and success build the participants' confidence in their ability to manage their health behaviors to reduce the risk of falls and to maintain active and fulfilling lives.

Does the Program Replace Existing Programs and Treatments?

The Stepping On program will not conflict with existing programs or treatments.

How was the Program Developed?

The program is the work of Dr. Lindy Clemson, a occupational therapist from Australia.

How was the Program Evaluated and what were the Results?

The Programs was published in the September 2004 issue of the Journal of American Geriatrics Society. At the end of the study, Dr. Clemson found those completing Stepping On experienced a 31% reduction of falls. This demonstration that the program was effective in preventing falls in community-residing older adults.

Wisconsin Contacts for Information

Wisconsin Institute for Healthy Aging
1414 MacArthur Road, Suite B
Madison, WI 53714
Phone: (608) 243-5690



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Last Revised: April 11, 2013