Balance is an essential part of our overall health and wellness, but it's often overlooked. As you age, your ability to balance naturally declines, as much as 75 percent between the ages of 25 and 75, unless you actively work on it. This can lead to falls and other health issues. However, health experts have found that a simple 10 second balance test can predict susceptibility to falls and with early intervention through exercise you can achieve better health. In this article, we will explore the importance of balance, how to take the 10-second balance test, and include a balance board exercise to help improve your balance.
Why is Balance Important?
Good balance is central to daily activities such as walking, running, and even standing still. In fact, 40 percent of walking movement occurs on one leg. Maintaining good balance helps prevent falls and injuries, especially in older adults. Falls are one of the leading causes of hospitalizations and deaths in the elderly. Injurious falls can contribute to overall physical decline, social functioning and general well-being. So it's essential to maintain good balance as we age.
How to Take the 10-Second Balance Test
The 10-second balance test is a simple test that measures your ability to maintain balance while standing on one leg for ten seconds. To take the test, stand straight with your feet hip-width apart and arms at your sides. Lift one foot and hold it for ten seconds, then switch to the other foot. If you can maintain balance for ten seconds on each leg, you have passed the test. Even if you pass the 10-second test, working on balance training is important, especially if you’re age 50 or over.
Balance Board Exercise to Improve Balance
One of the best ways to improve your balance is by using a balance board. We recommend the Huku Lár if you are over 45 and want to boost strength and improve balance. Balance boards are designed to challenge your balance and stability, which helps improve your overall balance. Here's a simple balance board exercise you can try at home:
- Stand on the balance board with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Keep your knees slightly bent and your core engaged.
- Slowly shift your weight to one foot while keeping the other foot on the board.
- Hold this position for 10-15 seconds, then switch to the other foot.
- Repeat for 2-3 sets on each foot.
As you get more comfortable with the exercise, you can try to hold the position for longer or add more movements, such as shifting your weight forward and backward or side to side.
Balance is an essential part of our overall health and wellness, but it's often overlooked. The 10-second balance test is a simple test that can predict better health. By taking the test, you can identify any balance issues and take steps to improve your balance and reduce the risk of falls and injuries. Incorporating balance board exercises into your daily routine can help improve your balance and stability. The Huku Lár is the best choice for you if you are over 45 and would like to improve your strength and balance.