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As we all know, the aging population in Canada is growing. By 2051 it is estimated that 26 per cent of Canada’s population will be above the age of 65. Frailty is a common condition of old age, however, frailty can also occur in younger years. Early identification and intervention are key in the prevention and perhaps even reversal of this long-term condition. The following list of questions will help you identify whether you, or someone you know, may be at risk of frailty.

  • Do you often feel tired or have low energy?
  • Have you noticed changes in the way you walk, or your walking speed?
  • Have you unintentionally lost more than 10 lbs in the last year?
  • Have you noticed a decrease in your strength?
  • Do you participate in less than 30 minutes of exercise five days per week?

If you answered yes to one or more of the preceding questions you may be at risk.

What is frailty?

Frailty is a cumulative decline across many of the body’s systems and is the failure of these systems to meet the demands of everyday life. If you are suffering from frailty, you are more vulnerable to everyday physical and psychological stressors. Research has shown that women start to experience decreases in strength starting at age 47, while men typically don’t show the same decline until age 73.

How can you prevent frailty?


One of the best ways to prevent, slow or even reverse the progression of frailty is to participate in a multi-component exercise program. Put simply, this means your exercise routine would include some form of cardio training (cycling, swimming, brisk walking, dancing etc.) as well as some resistance training (using bodyweight, bands, weights or machines) and finish with some stretches. Ideally, 3–5 times per week for 30–45 minutes.


If you have questions or are concerned about your general physical health talk to your family doctor and come to our next Seniors Health Assessment February 19 at the Kelowna Family Y where we will conduct a series of tests to assess each participant’s overall health and wellbeing. Space is limited so please call 250-491-9622 to register today.