5 Best Exercises to Improve your Balance

Balance is important for your overall health and wellbeing, as it helps to improve your posture, coordination, and even your mental health. But it can be difficult to find the right exercises to help build your balance. Here are five of the best exercises to improve your balance that you can do at home.

Balancing is an important skill that helps to prevent falls. Balance allows us to move around without fear of falling, while also helping us to remain steady even when we need to make quick movements. It gives us better control over our bodies and helps to reduce our risk of injury.

Having good balance is especially important as we age. As our muscles, bones, and joints become weaker, our balance can become impaired, making us more prone to falls. Without good balance, we can easily lose our footing or misjudge a step, leading to a fall.

Good balance is also important for athletes who rely on quick reflexes and agility. It helps them to stay on their feet and move quickly in any direction. Balance is also important for activities like hiking and rock climbing, where a misstep could be dangerous.

At Surrey Physio, we see a lot of falls and injuries that result from falling, especially in the older patient. Falling when you are older is a problem, it takes significantly more time to get over the fall. When we suspect trauma to a bone, especially a vertebra, we may need to get an X-ray performed to check the spine. We see several falls every week, and we help people to recover safely and properly, getting them back to full fitness.

The good news is that balance can be improved with exercise, and apart from manual therapy, Surrey Physio osteopaths and physios recommend some achievable simple balance exercises that you can do:

1. One Leg Stand - This exercise is simple and effective. Stand on one leg, and try to keep your balance. Be careful and hold on to a wall for support when you first start this exercise. A single leg balance exercise such as this is an enormously valuable exercise, and its benefits including strengthening the muscles and ligaments around the ankles and knees, and improving balance. Hold for one minute.

2. One Leg Stand, Eyes Closed – Stand on one leg with your eyes closed. Try to keep your balance. Be very careful and hold on to a wall for support when you first start this exercise. A single leg balance exercise with your eyes closed is an enormously valuable and quite difficult exercise, and should not be thought of lightly, it has many benefits including strengthening the muscles and ligaments around the ankles and knees, improving balance, and co-ordination. Hold for one minute if possible and practice until you can do it without losing balance.

3. Tip Toe Walking - Walk on tip toes. Start by doing it in trainers, but when you get more confident do it in bare feet. It’s a fantastic foot, ankle and leg strengthening exercise to the ligaments and muscles. It also helps improve balance. Change direction every few steps and make sure to keep your balance throughout.

4. Wobble Board - This exercise requires a balance board, which is a board with a ball that you stand on. Stand on a wobble board, with both feet, shoulder width apart. Try to keep your balance. This will improve ligament and muscle strength around your knees and ankles. You can also do this exercise with a Bosu ball. Hold for one minute.

5. Single Leg Hop - Stand on a stable surface. Gently bend one knee and lift your opposite foot from the floor. Hop with one leg. Repeat as required. This exercise can help improve balance and co-ordination, as well as leg strengthening. Repeat 30 times.

These five exercises are great for improving your balance and you can do them at home. Make sure to start with a few repetitions and increase the number of repetitions as you become more comfortable with the exercises. With regular practice, you'll be able to improve your balance and enjoy the many benefits of a stronger and healthier body.

(These videos are provided by Rehab My Patient – the best exercise prescription software for therapists to prescribe exercises www.rehabmypatient.com. If you are a patient needing advice, call Surrey Physio to book a telephone/video consultation with one of our expert physios or osteopaths, or book in face-to-face for an appointment. You can call us on 0208 685 6930 or book online by clicking the link at the top of the page).