Lora Giangregorio renewed as Schlegel Research Chair in Mobility and Aging

September 29, 2022

The Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging and University of Waterloo are pleased to announce Lora Giangregorio’s renewal as the Schlegel Research Chair in Mobility and Aging. Giangregorio’s research on safe and effective exercises for older adults and on working with health-care providers to give valuable exercise advice has benefitted older adults across Canada.

“Falls are the number one cause of hospitalization in older adults, and many falls result in fractures,” said Giangregorio, said Giangregorio, a professor in Waterloo’s Department of Kinesiology and Health Sciences. “Exercise programs that include strength and balance training can prevent falls, and improve physical functioning in older adults, so we need to find ways to implement programs like that in our healthcare system. My Chair position allows me to lead research to understand what exercise programs are most effective and how to implement research in practice.”

Giangregorio has changed our understanding of safe and healthy exercise for older adults, particularly those who are at a high risk of fracture. Since joining the RIA, Giangregorio has co-led MoveSTroNg (a nutrition and exercise program that taught older adults with chronic diseases how to perform beneficial exercises that can be easily integrated into their day), and worked with the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology on the 2020 Canadian 24-Hour Movement guidelines. Currently, she is part of a research team exploring the effects of different kinds of exercise programs on bone strength and other health outcomes in individuals with low bone mass.

“Lora is a world-renowned researcher in her field, leading crucial studies and clinical trials to improve the health of older adults through physical activity,” said Tina Mah, executive director at the RIA. “We’re honoured to renew her Schlegel Research Chair position, which has and will continue to impact the quality of life of Canadians and beyond.”

Giangregorio leads the Bone Health and Exercise Science lab (BonES lab), where her team conducts research to understand the best ways to use exercise to prevent falls and fractures. Her lab works with organizations like Osteoporosis Canada to develop physical activity guidelines, and they strive to effectively translate research into real-world practice. For example, Giangregorio’s research team has worked with Osteoporosis Canada to develop BoneFit™, a two-day workshop for physiotherapists and kinesiologists on appropriate assessment and exercise prescription for individuals with osteoporosis. Her lab also led the development of the Too Fit to Fracture Exercise and Physical Activity Recommendations for Individuals with Osteoporosis.

Giangregorio’s passion to improve both health and quality of life drives her work. To reach even more people beyond research publications and presentations, she educates the public through her lab Facebook page and YouTube account. Giangregorio has created educational videos to help improve sleep, show proper exercise form for those living with osteoporosis and more. 

Giangregorio’s Schlegel Research Chair in Mobility and Aging is renewed to August 31, 2027.