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  • Writer's pictureCRAIG BRYAN

Balance after 40

Have you noticed as you get older that your balance isn’t what it used to be? You start wondering, how am I going to make it better. As we age there’s a tendency to lose our balance and fall and one of worst fears is a broken hip.

The loss of balance can happen a couple of ways and one is a loss of muscle strength. The fact we don’t work on it or a practice our balance doesn’t help. We also know from studies that working on balance improves cognitive function. If we let our balance get worse, it can lead to falls and other injuries.

The best way to test your balance is to hold your arms straight out your sides, standing on one leg while raising the other knee up. You should be able to hold this position for 20-30 seconds, but unfortunately this is something a lot of us can’t do. The second test is the same position but with your eyes closed. Usually what happens is once people close their eyes they lose balance completely. But if you can close your eyes and hold that for 20 seconds you have excellent balance. If not, the first thing you need to work on is to be able to get your balance with your eyes open. Granted is it going to be easier on your dominant leg than on your nondominant leg.

Start out barefooted and raising one leg, holding it for as long as you can. Then raise the other leg and hold it for as long as you can. Once you get used to this. You can stand on the Airdex cushion and start the process over. All these things combined help achieve a good balance. You already know from reading my blogs, strength is very important. You need to strengthen your hips, your core, and your legs especially when you get past 40 or 50. Practicing your balance in itself is also a great way to improve your strength. I also use a vibration platform to help train my clients with their balance. The vibration platform provides a lot of strength and balance benefits. The vibration platform causes muscles to fire 30 to 50 times a second.

Stay tuned for more balance exercises. If you know anyone that would benefit from this information, please share.

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