From the time we learn to take our first steps, we also begin to learn what it feels like to fall. Likewise, we learn to hold onto things like the edge of a table or our parents’ fingers to avoid falling. This natural avoidance to losing our balance is an important thing to have. According to the Center for Disease Control, one out of five falls will result in a serious injury such as a broken bone or a brain injury. Falls are not to be taken lightly!
On the other hand, we cannot stop our everyday pursuits because we dread of experiencing a fall. Being cautious and preventing certain actions or regions that can make us prone to falling is sensible, but such as the CDC also notes, keeping active is one method of keeping us more powerful, which can also help us stop falling. Another manner to help us construct strength and combat the possibility of falling is by exercising frequently. These ten exercises, even when performed under the oversight of your physical therapist, can help you recover your balance and decrease your danger of falling.
- Simple Leg Lift – For this work out, begin with a kitchen chair setting before you. Secure yourself by holding onto the back of the chair, and raise one foot off the ground by twisting your knee and bringing it up toward your midsection. (It is best that you let go of the chair back so that you are balancing on your own without help, yet in the event that you’re uncertain or insecure, keep your hand on the chair.) Hold this position for 5-10 seconds; then take a stab at shutting your eyes and holding the position for 5-10 seconds. Then switch to the other leg and do the same exercise.
- Weight Shifts – Another practice to start with is a Weight Shift. Stand with your feet hip-width apart. With your hands down at your sides, or on your hips, lift one foot an inch or two off the floor and hold it there for 20-30 seconds. Put it down and repeat with the other foot. Do this the most number of times as you believe you can without getting too tired. As time passes by, the objective is to slowly increase the number of reps you do. If necessary, you can use a chair with this practice to help give you increased balance.
- One-Legged Clock – Standing on one foot, expand your arms straight above your head, as if you are flagging 12 o’clock on a clock face. Leaving your right hand on the “12,” move your left hand to the three, six, and nine o’clock positions (stopping at every position). Return your left hand to the 12, and repeat the steps with your right hand. Presently, switch feet and repeat. To challenge yourself further, do it with your eyes shut.
- Tai Chi – Whether you attend a class, or follow online recordings, Tai Chi has been demonstrated to enhance balance.
- Yoga – Like with Tai Chi, yoga has additionally been indicated to enhance the balance of those who practice it. Once more, you can choose to take a class or follow an online course or DVD.
- Heel-to-Toe Walk – This practice is basic, yet compelling. Walk 20 paces forward, heel-to-toe. If necessary, do this inside arm’s scope of a wall to help you with keeping your balance. After you go ahead 20 paces, go backward 20 paces — toe-to-heel. Doing this all the time can help you recover a feeling of balance.
- Squats – To complete a squat, stand with your feet hip-width apart. Bowing at the knee, and not the midsection, crouch toward the floor, holding your arms straight out before you. Imagine you are sitting in an invisible chair. If necessary, keep a chair before you to help you get up and down. This exercise will help strengthen your leg muscles, which is vital for the anticipation of falls. An alternative way to squat: begin with your back and heels against a wall. Keeping your arms out before you, twist at the knee and slide down the wall to a seated like position (once more, imagine you are sitting in an invisible chair). Utilizing your legs, propel yourself back to a standing position. Having a wall behind you can be a major help when you’re beginning or if you require extra help with balance.
- Back Leg Raises – You can hang on to a kitchen chair while doing these leg raises, or you can put your hands on a wall, whichever is most agreeable for you. Once you have chosen your preference, you will stand on one leg while raising the other one behind you. Attempt not to lean forward or twist the knee of the leg you’re raising; simply lift your leg as far away the ground as is comfortable for you, hold it for two or three seconds, and let it back down. Do this for 10 reps, then do the same thing with the inverse leg! This helps to build back muscles and buttock muscles.
- Side Leg Raises – Like with the Back Leg Raises, you can utilize a divider or a chair to unfaltering yourself with. Then, standing on one foot, lift your other foot out to the side. Go as high as you are OK with, hold it for a few seconds, and let it back down. Once more, do this for 10 reps, then repeat with the other leg. This practice helps strengthen your buttocks, as well as helps with your thigh muscles and your hip muscles.
- Stability Ball – This ball may resemble a curiously large inflatable ball, yet it’s definitely not. Simply learning to sit on a steadiness ball can help enhance your balance. Subsequent to getting the hang of sitting on it, you can then use it in different exercises. You can sit on it while using dumbbells or you can utilize it while doing sit-ups. It’s an extremely flexible tool to help enhance balance and stability.
Even though these exercises might be a good beginning point to help you enhance your balance and decrease your danger of falling, your physical therapist may have additional exercises or variants that they may tailor specifically for you.