Balance Training is an often overlooked aspect of most people’s exercise regimen. When I work out at the gym I see people doing all sorts of exercises, but very rarely do I see anyone performing balance exercises. As we age and become more sedentary, movement can become restricted and balance and stability skills may decline. This is why balance and stability training are imperative.
Balance problems can be caused by many things i.e., including medications, inner ear problems, blood pressure, illness, even hammertoes.
Everyone needs to work on maintaining functional balance. We are never too young or too old to benefit from balance training. A healthy balance system helps us to feel good and to move freely and confidently. Keeping this system healthy is especially important if you have problems due to illness, such as joint pain, weakness or dizziness. Balance training can help you overcome feelings of unsteadiness.
Loss of balance and stability is a serious matter. When individuals lose their ability to balance or to walk safely, the end result is often a nursing home with mobility restricted to a walker or the confines of a wheelchair.
There are several exercise modalities that you can use to improve your balance, such as Yoga and Tai Chi. One of the simplest balance exercises to practice is standing on one foot. This exercise can be made more challenging by lifting the leg higher, abducting it out to the side or extending it behind you. Single-leg movements from side to side are also good for challenging balance and core strength. Standing one leg balance can be made more challenging by raising the heel, closing one or both eyes, or by raising the arms over head.
By training to enhance your balance, you will recognize postural improvements, coordination, and better athletic performance. This in turn will result in fewer injuries and greater stability as you age, which can help prevent falls and keep you both strong and independent longer.
Good balance and a strong pelvic floor often go hand-and-hand. For more information please click here: Pelvic Floor Muscles.
Check with your doctor or therapist before starting an exercise program.