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Delta Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation in Bury

The Key To Aging Gracefully: Embracing Balance!

This  month at Delta Physiotherapy we are focusing on a topic that often gets overlooked but plays a vital role in our overall wellbeing, BALANCE ! And there no better time than now to start improving our balance to ensure we continue an active lifestyle. So with that in mind lets explore the importance of balance, the implications of poor balance, and how balance exercises can help us regain our stability and confidence. 

The Importance Of Balance

Many of us have marveled at a tightrope walker gracefully navigating a thin wire high above the ground and thought it was an impressive party trick, but balance is much more than this, it is a fundamental aspect of our daily lives. As we age, our balance naturally declines due to factors such as muscle weakness, reduced flexibility, and changes in sensory perception. It might sound like its all doom and gloom but there is good news! By actively working on improving our balance, we can help mitigate these effects and maintain an active, independent and injury-free lifestyle.

Potential Implications Of Poor Balance

The impact of poor balance can potentially be significant both physically and mentally. The risk most of us would associate with poor balance would be falling and the implications of this. We know that falls are a leading cause of injuries amongst older adults, with 90% of hip fractures are caused by falls. These injuries can be one of the most life altering and life shortening.

There are some of us who have elderly relatives or neighbours whose confidence we have seen decrease with age as a result of their balance deteriorating. This may lead to individuals becoming hesitant to engage in everyday activities, leading to a loss of independence. Fear of falling and lack of confidence may limit our mobility and  ability to enjoy life to the fullest. This can then impact on their mental and physical wellbeing as they steer towards a more sedentary lifestyle as they do not feel confident getting out. This reduced physical activity can impact physically and result in muscle weakness, reduced cardiovascular fitness and reducing bone density.

Now For The Good News!

We can actively work on improving our balance and minimise the risks associated with poor balance, and there is no better time to start than now, no matter what your age! Balance exercises are an effective way to regain stability and enhance our overall wellbeing. Studies have shown that regular participation in balance exercises can reduce the risk of falls by almost 25%. You can start today by doing simple exercises; hold on to a wall or a secure object and lift one foot slightly off the floor and hold for 30 seconds, and then switching to the other. Over time as your balance increases you may be able to do this without the need to hold onto something and progress your exercises from there. For more exercises check out the NHS balance page.

Good posture is also important for balance: by standing up straight,  your weight is centered over your feet making you more steady and less likely to fall. For those who can’t associate themselves with the risk of having a fall, regular balance work should still be a priority as it can decrease the risk of a sprained ankle by up to 40%. Following an injury, balance work is essential help prevent recurrence of the injury.

So lets make balance a priority! With determination, practice and the right exercises we can improve our balance and continue to enjoy life to the fullest.

For more information on our  new taster Classes ‘Over 55s Strength’ and ‘Balance & Core’ to help you stay active and healthy please contact the team on 0161 641 3900.

*It’s always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before starting a new exercise programme.

person standing on one foot tree pose in Yoga