Anyone facing balance issues can attest, falling is an awful experience. For those looking to lessen their odds of taking a significant fall, here are four exercises that can help.
- Balancing on one leg
Start with one foot in line with each shoulder. Lift one leg and gradually bend the opposite knee. Hold this position for between 15 and 30 seconds. Switch legs and do the same movement for 3 sets. If needed, use a wall or couch for balance.
2. Walking heel-to-toe
With both arms extended in a T-position, walk in a straight line, with the back of your heel touching the toes of your feet with each step. If this is impossible, keep your heel and toe as close together as possible, working your way up to contact.
Choose a level chair, without wheels. Stand in front of it, facing away, with both hands clasped at chest level. Slowly, sit at the edge of the chair. Then, lean your shoulders forward and shift your weight to your feet, while tensing your muscles and raising to your feet. Repeat, until the exercise is easy, without using hands to push off from the seat.
4. Knee curls
Stand behind a solid, level chair, while holding onto the backrest. Straighten your back and bend slightly at the knees. Then, lift one leg, so it is straight behind you, and bring your heel to make contact with your body. Lower your leg and repeat with the opposite. Continue for ten to 15 reps.
For more leisurely suggestions, consider taking up Tai Chi or taking a walk on sand or loose dirt. An easy walk on soft, shifting materials, with a spotter, can be beneficial when trying to regain balance.