While many people age 50 and older know they need to focus on their arms, legs and back when working out, they are most likely ignoring other parts of their bodies. You probably are, too.

“As we age, we may think we’re active and doing the things to keep us that way,” says Joe Palmer, a doctor of physical therapy, VP and co-owner of Active Life & Sports Physical Therapy in Maryland. Oftentimes, he says, when patients come to his clinics with pain in their lower extremities, it’s because they aren’t keeping their hips strong. “Hip strengthening is where you get the most bang for your buck,” Palmer says. “People who walk slower typically have weaker hips, and that impacts their balance.”

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