Most of the time we don’t think about our balance until we feel unsteady or until we have a fall. However our balance starts to decline as early as our 30’s. The good news is that we can improve it with exercise! There are many factors that contribute to decreased balance as we age such as vision loss, medication side effects, decreased muscle strength, other health conditions, fear of falling, not getting enough sleep and the list goes on. 

Training static and dynamic balance can increase your coordination, better your reaction time, increase you mobility and agility, reduce fitness related or other injuries and allow you to perform better in your daily life. Falling is NOT a normal part of aging! Be proactive and prevent a fall. Even if you don’t feel old or are not concerned about your balance, focusing on these exercises can help you improve your tennis or golf game. 

Personal training is beneficial to determine what area or areas of balance you need to work on. Do you need to train to increase muscle strength, or train one of your sensory systems? A balance assessment can determine what areas need work and what exercises to focus on.

You may have heard about practicing standing on one leg as you brush your teeth or as you are in the kitchen waiting for your coffee and thought why do I need to do that? Well, it is important to practice single leg balance because we are on one leg during walking, climbing stairs, getting in a car, and stepping into a shower or tub. Try to do single leg balance at a counter top 2x/day and hold up to 1 min on each leg with as little or no hand support if possible. 

Another exercise to try at home:

Stand with your feet as close together as possible and hold for 30 seconds if you can, if that is too hard you can separate your feet a bit. If it is too easy try with your eyes closed. Another way to make it more challenging is to try it while standing on a pillow. Do this exercise in a corner and with a chair in front of you for safety.

Contact A to Z Personal Wellness for a balance assessment!