SteadyFeet? Balance and Mobility Program

SteadyFeet? is a partnership program between Vancouver Coastal Health, Community and Seniors Centres, and older adults who want to take an active role in their health and prevent falls. Recommended by doctors and physiotherapists, SteadyFeet? balance and mobility program for older adults will help:

  • increase confidence

  • improve functional mobility

  • increase lower body strength

  • improve balance

  • reduce fall risk

Registered SteadyFeet? Instructors teach techniques to have you feeling stronger and more confident about walking and participating in your favourite activities.

  • Small class sizes to ensure your safety

  • Registered SteadyFeet? Instructors are specially trained in balance and mobility exercises for seniors

  • Safe for participants with osteoporosis and other health conditions

  • You can use your mobility aid (walker/cane) in class

  • A family member or care aid is welcome to accompany you to class to translate or to help you with the exercises

 


Class locations

Contact a location directly for: start dates, program fees, assessment day appointments and registration information.

Community centre classes (open for public registration)

Richmond

Sunshine Coast

Vancouver

Adult day centre classes

If you are registered in Adult Day Programs at these locations, you can also can participate: A.S.K. Friendship Centre, Beulah Gardens Adult Day Centre, Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood House, Chown Adult Day Centre, Renfrew-Collingwood Neighbourhood House, South Vancouver Adult Day Centre, and S.U.C.C.E.S.S. & Chieng's Adult Day Centre. 

Email: steadyfeet@vch.ca

Referral

A referral is not required. 

Eligibility

Who can benefit from SteadyFeet? classes?

Most participants range in age from 65-95 years old, but there are no specific age requirements to participate. Classes are designed to be safe for individuals who:

  • are struggling with balance

  • have a history of falls

  • are afraid of falling

  • have had a joint replacement

  • have osteoporosis

  • are not steady enough for a cardiac rehab program

  • are managing a variety of health conditions

  • need to improve their strength, mobility and balance to maintain their independence

To participate in a SteadyFeet? class you must:

  • be able to walk independently, with or without a mobility aid

  • be able to follow direction with or without the help of a caregiver (and/or translator)

  • be able to tolerate light to moderate physical activity

  • participate in a 20 minute assessment session to help your instructor plan activities which will be most helpful for you

  • commit to 2 sessions per week for 8-10 weeks

  • have transportation to and from class

Resources

SteadyFeet? program brochure

SteadyFeet? poster (man)

SteadyFeet? poster (woman)

VCH Fall Prevention Program Website

Safety Superheroes Program (intergenerational fall prevention resources)

VCH OASIS Program Website (osteoarthritis information)

Finding Balance BC (provincial collection of fall prevention resources)

Aging is a Contact Sport (information about hip protectors)

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What's an assessment session?

Once you've decided to sign up for SteadyFeet? classes, you will attend a 20 minute assessment session at the location where you have registered. You'll do a few activities that will help determine which activities will be most beneficial for you.

After you've finished the SteadyFeet program, you'll be assessed again so we can see how much your balance, mobility and confidence have improved.

How many classes will I attend?

Two classes per week, usually for 8-10 weeks. This varies between locations.

What should I wear to a SteadyFeet Class?

You should dress comfortably and wear sensible shoes (no high heels).

How can I get to class?

HandyDART can provide transportation by booking a "subscription trip". In the Metro Vancouver area, call (604) 575-6600 for more information.

Interested in becoming a community partner?

We are always looking for additional community locations within the VCH regions to host SteadyFeet? Balance & Mobility Classes at their site. If you're interested in becoming a community partner and hosting SteadyFeet? classes in your area, contact steadyfeet@vch.ca for more details. Locations must meet the following criteria:

  • Easily accessible for participants using mobility aids (walkers, canes)

  • Room large enough that participants can complete their activities without touching/bumping into each other

  • Access to sturdy chairs (if possible, some with arms and some without)

  • Well-lit room with the ability to close blinds if there is too much glare and/or heat

Are you a community partner?

Contact us for community partner resources for program administration (manuals, forms, and templates), program promotional materials (posters and brochures) and supplies and equipment information.

Are you a community partner looking to hire instructors?

Hiring instructors for SteadyFeet? classes is at the discretion of community partners. For help finding a qualified instructor, email to ask us for a list of registered SteadyFeet? instructors.

Want to volunteer?

Volunteering in a SteadyFeet? class is a great way to get involved in your community. If you would like to be part of this great program as a SteadyFeet? Trained volunteer, please email steadyfeet@vch.ca for more information.

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Why should health professionals refer patients to SteadyFeet??

You can confidently refer patients to a SteadyFeet? class knowing that they will be in an exercise class designed to keep them safe.

Community partner locations are chosen for their accessibility, instructors are specially trained and have experience delivering exercise programs to older adults, and the program is supported by a multi-disciplinary team of Fall and Injury Prevention specialists at Vancouver Coastal Health.

The principles of the SteadyFeet? program help ensure that:

  • class sizes are small

  • class content is consistent across locations and instructors

  • the content is evidence based, and designed to maximize effectiveness

  • the program is delivered on a cost recovery basis, and kept as affordable as possible

How to refer patients to SteadyFeet??

Referring a client or patient to the SteadyFeet? program is quick and easy. 

STEP 1 - Provide information

Suggest that they might like to participate, and give them some information about the program and why it might benefit them. Print brochures and posters can be ordered from the Fall & Injury Prevention program. A digital brochure and posters can be downloaded below, and printed or emailed to clients and/or families.

SteadyFeet? program brochure

SteadyFeet? poster (man)

SteadyFeet? poster (woman)

STEP 2 - Find a location

View the list of locations and choose one your client can get to. Provide your client with the location's phone number so they can call to register themselves and get more information directly. Registration takes place separately at each community location.

STEP 3 - Client registers

Any forms required to participate in SteadyFeet classes will be provided to the client by the location when the client registers for classes.