Strength & Balance Exercises
Balance exercises can help you stay independent by helping you avoid a disability that may result from falling. Each year, U.S. hospitals have 300,000 admissions for broken hips. Frequently, falling is the cause for these fractures. By doing strength and balance exercises regularly you can reduce your risk of suffering from a debilitating fall.
The strength and balance exercises have some overlap since very often, one exercise serves both purposes. The lower-body strength exercises which include; plantar flexion, hip flexion, hip extension, knee flexion, and side leg raise are also balance exercises.
Regularly scheduled strength exercises will improve your balance at the same time. They can improve your balance even more if you add the following modifications: Note that these exercises instruct you to hold onto a table or chair for balance. Hold onto the table with only one hand. As you progress, try holding on with only one fingertip. Next, try these exercises without holding on at all. If you are very steady on your feet, move on to doing the exercises using no hands, with your eyes closed. Have someone stand close by if you are unsteady.
Do your strength exercises, and incorporate these balance techniques as you progress. Over time you will notice that these exercises will help you feel more steady and confident when you move and engage in daily activities.
These exercises will help you improve your balance. Begin slowly and work your way through the steps as your confidence and ability improves.
- Hip extension
- Side leg raises
- Knee flex
- Trio of balance exercises
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Medically reviewed by Robert Bargar, MD; Board Certification in Public Health & General Preventive Medicine September 13, 2017