In past articles I talk about the three systems involved with our balance; eyes, ears, and feet. In todays balance exercises, I talk about how we use our eyes to balance which is pretty self-explanatory.
By ears I am referring to our vestibular system in our ears which keeps our head level which in turn keeps our body upright. By feet I am referring to our sensory system in our feet, legs and hips which sense the ground and react appropriately when we need to walk on uneven surfaces like hills or the beach.
With these three systems we can maintain our balance and avoid falling. Today’s exercise involves improving our sense of feeling the ground without the aid of our eyes. By that I mean we purposely don’t look at the ground while we walk heel to toe..
This way we stress the sensory system by isolating it and forcing it to improve without the benefit of our eyes. Get ready. Balance exercises like this one are harder than they look. Instead of walking in a straight line, I have you walking heel to toe around a chair.
This way is safer than walking without anything to hold on to. You will continuously walk in a circle around the chair while maintaining your gaze ahead and blocking your vision of your feet. All you need to perform this exercise is a chair that does not have armrests.
A kitchen chair is a great option for an exercise chair. They usually don’t have armrests and often have a padded seat. Place the chair in front of your computer and watch the chair walking exercise to improve your balance by strengthening your sense of position in your feet and legs.
Make sure to hold on the chair as you walk heel to toe around in a circle when performing these balance exercises. Give it a try!