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Balance Your Every Move With Simple Stretches

By Sandy Schroeder


Most of us take balance for granted, but it's all too easy to trip or slip on a slick floor, or fall when you hurry. Exercise as you emphasize balance and power through sports and move with speed and grace. 


Balance is a complicated affair. Your eyes, ears, tendons, bones, muscles, and brain all work together to keep you balanced. Age can interfere with low blood pressure, inner ear disorders, or less sensation in the feet. Overcome the effects of aging with simple balance exercises. 


Build Better Balance in 3 Steps 


Do static exercises that work when you are standing still and dynamic exercises that work when you are moving.  Use these exercises 2 to 3 times a week. 


Standing Static Exercise - Do 1 to 3 reps of this light to moderate stretch. Hold 5 to 30 seconds.  Stand up straight with weight distributed on both feet and arms at your side. Brace abdominal muscles. Put your left foot in front of your right foot, heel to toe and squeeze inner thighs together. Raise arms out to sides at shoulder level. Repeat and rotate steps. Keep shoulders down and back and focus on a spot straight ahead as you tighten abdominal, buttocks, and inner thighs to improve balance. Hold onto a counter for balance. 


Dynamic Exercise - Do 10 of these exercises in a slow and controlled tempo. Stand with feet together with weight evenly distributed and arms at both sides. Step toward the right with your right foot. Cross in front with your left foot. Step again with right foot and cross behind with left foot. Continue braiding for 10 steps and then bring feet together. Repeat the braiding as you move to the left. 


Dynamic Exercise - Stand up straight and lift your arms out to each side.  Step forward with your left foot and lift the right knee. Step back with your right foot and lift up your left knee. Keep rotating as you focus on your breathing and tighten buttocks for stability. Use a chair as backup for stability. 


If these work for you, keep looking for more ways to exercise to improve your balance. You will run faster, score more points, and stay safe wherever you are. Recommend these exercises to your kids and seniors in your family.


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


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