Wednesday, March 2, 2011

How to Improve Your Balance

As we age there are many things that are inevitable. There are also several things we can do to be proactive and maintain quality of life and independence. Along with walking which should be a given, weight training is a proven way to maintain muscle strength and tone. Unfortunately many people know this but don't follow through and make routine exercise a part of the day to day.
If you want work on balance, here are a few easy exercises. These can go along with your walking and resistance routine or possible be a good place to start. The first one is to look at a clock with a second hand and stand on one leg (without holding on to something.) Have something close by and just tap it to steady yourself as you need it. Start with 20-30 seconds and work up to a min. Repeat the other leg and do the same thing. You usually find one side is easier than the other. This will not only help your balance but also strengthen the feet and ankles. The other thing to do is what I call the Drunk Test. Walk heel to toe across a long room. After this becomes easy you can make it more challenging by pausing a few secs. after each step and then crossing your arms as you pause. If you're better than me you can close your eyes and try. Make sure you have someone you trust in back of you.

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