Content
Skip To Navigation Skip to Content
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregedivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregafgivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
Individuals & Caregivers
Physical & Occupational Therapy
Public Health Professionals
Teachers
 

NCHPAD - Building Healthy Inclusive Communities

Font Size:

Balance Exercises


Download PDF copy of this week's tip sheet

Watch this week's video tip below to watch Blythe Hiss discuss balance exercises and demonstrate both standing and seated exercises.



Video Clip Text

Performing balance exercises can improve balance, posture and gait as well as reduce the risk and fear of falls.

Balance exercises involve maintaining standing and posture under a variety of conditions. We recommend incorporating balance into everyday activities, as well as performing a specific program two to three days each week.

To do this in your daily activities, just try standing on 1 foot while doing dishes or brushing your teeth, keeping a sturdy object nearby, like the kitchen or bathroom counter.

When you first start a specific balance training program, this should include 1 set of about 5 balance-specific exercises, performed 2 times per week with each exercise lasting for 10 to 15 seconds.

Exercises based on needs and abilities should be selected with safety being a critical factor. It is necessary to clear the environment of any obstacles that may interfere with the exercise and it is also important to remember that someone with poor balance should not perform exercises alone.

How do you progress?

You can progress by increasing the time of each exercise to 30 seconds, then by increasing to 2 to 3 sets of each exercise. You can then gradually increase the challenge of the exercise. Here are some examples of how to increase the challenge:

  • reduce the base of support (standing on one leg)
  • change the base of support (stand on foam surface, shown in video)
  • perform dynamic or more active movements that challenge your center of gravity (tandem walk with one foot directly in front of the other, shown in video)
  • reduce sensory input (closing your eyes)

Here are the balance exercises shown in video.

TANDEM STANDING

Place one foot directly in front of the other, touching heel to toe and hold. Repeat with other foot in front. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. For more difficulty, stand on a foam surface.


ONE LEG BALANCE

Lift foot to stand on one leg. Repeat on other leg. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. For more difficulty, stand on a foam surface.


STANDING HIP RAISE

Lift the hip and knee. Repeat on other leg. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. For more difficulty, stand on a foam surface.


STANDING KNEE BEND

Bend the knee, pulling the heel upward. Repeat on other leg. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. For more difficulty, stand on a foam surface.


STANDING KICK

Extend the knee and kick forward. Repeat on other leg. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. You can make this exercise more difficult two ways, by standing on a foam surface and/or using an exercise band looped around both ankles to provide resistance during the kick while also increasing the level of balance difficulty.


STANDING SIDE KICK

Extend the knee and kick out to the side. Repeat on other leg. Maintain upright posture and use a sturdy chair for support as needed. You can make this exercise more difficult two ways, by standing on a foam surface and/or using an exercise band looped around both ankles to provide resistance during the kick while also increasing the level of balance difficulty.


SEATED BALANCE EXERCISE

You can do this seated balance exercise from a wheelchair, chair, or to make a little more difficult, from a stability ball (shown). Sit with upright posture with feet on the floor. Extend one knee and kick it forward. Repeat on the other leg.


As always, even with a balance training program, remember the following:

  • Perform a warm-up and cool-down with every session.
  • Start slowly and progress slowly
  • Continue to use the RPE scale to monitor the difficulty or intensity of the exercises
  • Breathe properly (never hold your breath)
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Maintain proper posture and form throughout each exercise.

Please call Blythe Hiss with any questions at 312-996-5965.


Please visit http://www.ncpad.org/survey/survey.php?sid=66 to provide us with your valuable feedback.



blog comments powered by Disqus