Gareth R. Jones, PhD, Director, Canadian Centre for Activity and Aging, London, ON.
Jessalynn A.B. Frederick, BHK Honors Co-op, University of Windsor, Windsor, ON.
Canadian Centre for Activity and Aging is affiliated with St. Joseph's Health Care, London and the University of Western Ontario, London, ON.
"Homeboundness" is defined as never or almost never leaving one's home except for emergencies, not going beyond one's door without assistance, or going out of one's home less than once a month, and it is estimated to affect as much as 50% of the population who are 85+ years old.1 The older homebound adult is more likely to live alone, have mobility limitations, experience incontinence problems, and be considered at high risk for falling and fear of falling, as well as more likely to receive home support services.2 Frail seniors living at home are particularly difficult to reach and are at high risk for loss of functional independence and for institutionalization.3
Home exercise is an effective means to prevent falls, to maintain functional independence and to promote rehabilitation following injury or illness.4 However, for an older adult faced with mobility challenges and/or other medical problems, attending a traditional community-based exercise program may not be a suitable option.