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Try This Test to Check Your Balance

By Sandy Schroeder

You may suspect your balance is off if you occasionally wobble or weave. As you move, you may feel a little unsure at times. Keeping your balance is critical to maintain your daily routines and avoid falls. Take this simple test and check yours now.

Quick Balance Test

Harvard Health has come up with this quick test to check your balance. Try it and take steps if you do not pass.

Stand near a wall - Position arms and hands where you feel comfortable. Lift one foot an inch or two off of the floor and balance on the other foot. See how long you can hold this pose before you have to put the raised foot down or reach out to the wall to support yourself.

If you cannot stand on one leg without support - Touch the wall or hold onto a chair back. Ease your grip as you gain your balance. If you can hold this single leg stance for 60 seconds you have very good balance. If you cannot hold it for more than 10 seconds you may be risking a fall. See your doctor to check for any other conditions, and discuss steps to improve balance.

Everybody Needs Good Balance

People of all ages run into balance problems. Too much weight, too little exercise, or other health issues can affect balance. Wherever you are in age and ability, make sure your balance is normal to avoid falls and injuries.

Every day demands good balance - As we juggle family, work and household tasks, a strong hand and steady balance is crucial. On the weekends, balance can spark sports performance or let it down.

Kids, teens, adults and seniors are affected - Wherever life takes them, balance is key. Kids soar on skateboards and seniors stretch to stay mobile with one cautious step after another.

Fractures and falls change lives - Seniors who want to keep up with life need to stay mentally and physically balanced to enjoy trips, hobbies and grand kids.

Balance Prescription

Use a combination of these exercise types to maintain balance and avoid falls.

  • Flexibility
  • Aerobic
  • Strength and resistance
  • Coordination and gait
  • Balance

Getting Specific

Increase power, coordination and balance with these exercises.

  • Consider yoga to become stronger and more limber
  • Build upper and lower body strength with elastic bands, small weights or gym machines
  • Walk, climb stairs or bicycle to power legs and lower body
  • Discover tai chi's gentle movements to increase balance, strength and mood, reducing falls
  • Stretch muscles and joints to improve balance.

Before starting any new fitness program, see your doctor and your chiropractor for approval and guidance.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Monrovia, Calif.

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