The primary purpose of the Balance and Falls SIG is to provide a forum for the increase of knowledge and quality of Physical Therapy practice in relation to older persons with balance problems and an increased risk for falling.

These include:
    • Programs at CSM
    • Articles in Gerinotes or other publications
    • Initiating discussions on Listserve.
    • Journal Club
    • Newsletters to Members

There are many opportunities for participation, so please consider getting involved! To participate or learn more about current SIG activities and projects, contact the SIG chair.


  • CHAIR: Heidi Moyer, PT, DPT
  • VICE CHAIR: Haim Nesser, PT, DPT
  • SECRETARY: Beth Castellini, PT
  • CLINICAL LIAISONS: Stefanie Bond, PT, DPT and Heather Timothy, PT, MSPT
  • RESEARCH LIAISON: Jennifer Gindoff, PT, DPT
  • EARLY CAREER PROFESSIONAL LIAISON: Holly Bennett, PT, DPT and Kimberlyn Thomas, PT, DPT


Member Spotlight: A Mind-Body Approach to Fall Prevention

October 10, 2022

Imagine if you could help your patient reduce their risk of falling by teaching them to use a simple ABC system prior to them beginning a come-to-standing or walking task. Teaching them how and why to Align, do conscious Breathing, and focus or Center on the activity they are about to do is one of several “mind-body” approaches that may help them prepare mentally and physically for any motor activity

Try it yourself. Take a few moments to become conscious of your posture, slow your breathing down and become present to the moment. Use the moment to visualize yourself coming to standing, with support if necessary. You stop in an erect standing position. Then, before you start to walk, say to yourself, or out loud, “I am tall, strong and confident” as you proceed with the activity. You have just used The ABC system, in combination with visualization and positive self-talk to prepare your mind and body for safer and more efficient functioning.

Here’s a strategy helpful for patients paralyzed with “fear of falling.” I have had success by saying to them, “Yes, the fear is there, but tell it that you are not going to let it control you! You are going to control it!” This, in conjunction with the positive self-talk described above, has seemed to have an empowering effect on how patients progress with their gait and balance activities. The more any of us healthcare workers learn how to integrate mind-body techniques into our work, the safer and more effective our treatments will be, for our patients and ourselves! It can be as easy as ABC!

C. Vicki Gold, PT, MA is a retired physical therapist, currently living in Lenoir, North Carolina. Her 50-plus years in the profession have included work in several academic and multiple clinical settings. She is a former Director of the Physical Therapist Program at LaGuardia Community College in New York City. Ms. Gold’s work is based on her background with Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, Alexander and Feldenkrais Techniques. She is a graduate of Sara Meeks, PT Seminars and has studied with Margaret Knott, PT (PNF) and Berta Bobath, PT (NDT) among others.

Vicki is the owner of Thera-Fitness and creator of The ABC System for Mind-Body Fitness and Well-Being. She can be reached at

BF SIG Quarter 3 2022 Update

October 10, 2022

Greetings APTA Geriatrics BF SIG Members,

The executive committee and other volunteers of the BF SIG are hard at work behind the scenes on several projects including the following:

  • Early Career Professional Liaisons Holly and Kimma are continuing to work on their Neuro-Geri Balance and Falls Toolkits to provide clinicians with fast and easy access to clinical tools to address concerns in older adults with neurologic impairments.
  • Research Liaison Jennifer will have her response to mobility programs in LTCFs published in the November Focus Edition of GeriNotes. She eagerly awaits new clinical questions to die deeper into!
  • Community Outreach Liaison Tammy coordinated a FABULOUS National Falls Prevention Awareness Day Kick Off Call in June with speakers from the BF SIGs of APTA Geriatrics, APTA Oncology, and Academy of Neurologic Physical Therapy as well as the APTA Geriatrics State Advocates and a student panel! You can catch the recording on our webpage.
  • Secretary Beth led an amazing Journal Club Case Study discussion on September 20th about the use of the 4 stage balance test in a patient who might not typically be considered for dynamic multi-directional balance training. A big thanks to Jen for helping to get that case study print-ready for the August GeriNotes!
  • Clinical Liaisons Heather and Stefanie are hard at work continuing to create quality content for the BF SIG Monthly Challenge.
  • 2 programs were accepted from the BF SIG for APTA CSM 2023 in San Diego, CA: Solving the Balance Problem in Medically Complex Patients across the Lifespan (authored by Rachel Hac, Debbie Espy, and Heidi Moyer) and Joining the Fight for Parkinson’s: Combating Disease Progression Through Evidence-Informed Interventions Across the Continuum (authored by Haim, Heather, and Stefanie). Come check us out!
  • Vice-Chair Haim was interviewed for an Article in APTA Magazine titled “A Closer Look at Falls Prevention.” Thank you for representing us well!
  • The BF SIG Tri-Alliance Team of Geri, Neuro, and Oncology has officially launched their combined-efforts National Falls Prevention Awareness Day Campaign! Check out APTA Geriatrics social media for more details and pledge to participate in #NFPAW from September until October 8th on the PT Day of Service website!

Hope you enjoyed our twitter take over to kick off #NFPAW!

Check back in December for additional updates from quarter 4 and important pre-CSM announcements!

Tri-Alliance Campaign

September 23, 2022

The APTA Geriatrics BF SIG is proud to announce that we have created a collaborative document sharing all our open access resources to help you better provide balance and falls prevention services in the community, clinic, and beyond. Please feel free to share this with anyone who might be interested.

Access the Tri-alliance Campaign


NFPAW Kick Off Call Information

July 8, 2022

On June 29th, 2022, the APTA Geriatrics BF SIG had their Annual National Falls Prevention Awareness Day Kick Off Call to assist members in beginning to brainstorm and plan their events and efforts for the week of September 18-24. Our Clinical Liaison, Tammy McHugh, served as the creator and master of ceremonies for the event. We were honored to host the following guest speakers for the evening:

  • Cathy Ciolek, APTA Geriatrics President
  • Governors State University DPT Student Speaker Miguel Musngi with Student Panel Members TaShea’ Moore, Daniel Kusper, and Andres Garcia
  • Deb Espy, Academy of Neurologic Physical Therapy BF SIG Chair
  • Eric Galvez, APTA Oncology BF SIG Membership Chair
  • David Taylor, APTA Geriatrics House of Delegates Representative
  • Tammy McHugh, APTA Geriatrics BF SIG Community Outreach Liaison

Top resources that were shared during the call included:

A big thank you to all our speakers and to all those who attended! Did you miss the call? Listen to the call recording here or peruse through the call powerpoint.

BF SIG Events

No Upcoming Events Found

BF SIG Newsletters


Balance and Falls SIG Member Resources

How to conduct virtual fall prevention

by Jennifer Nash, APTA-Geri State Advocate for Nevada Click here to Download


From the 2020 BFSIG Falls Prevention Awareness Week Brainstorming Webinar and Guest Presentation on Virtual Balance Assessment from Winston-Salem State University, July 28, 2020


Outcome Measure Toolkit for Geriatric Fall/Balance Assessment

The Balance and Falls Special Interest Group of the APTA Geriatrics developed this toolkit as an updated summary of current outcome measures related to balance and fall risk assessment. It is available, OPEN ACCESS here:

Falls Prevention Awareness Toolkit: A Comprehensive Guide to Professional & Community Engagement, 2nd Edition

The Falls Prevention Awareness Toolkit developed by the Balance and Falls Special Interest Group of the APTA Geriatrics is available, OPEN ACCESS below.

The resources provided within the toolkit are designed to assist clinicians and students in creating and/or improving their community-based falls prevention events by utilizing current evidence and a wide-variety of quality resources.

Research Resources:


The Monthly Challenge

Every month, we send out an email to interested members with a quick summary of an aspect of balance and falls management. This email thread allows members to have topic specific communication as well as share experiences/ideas. We will also be posting the materials to our google drive which you can access at any time. Emails are sent out at the beginning of each month. If you wish to join the email chain and get the information before anyone else, email us at .


National Fall Prevention Awareness Day Resources


Links of Interest:


Resources for your ToolBox: