Balance Exercises and Activities of Daily Living

Proper balance bestows a feeling of wellbeing and confidence to any human being on our planet.  It is especially important to seniors.  A confident walk, without the fear of falling, enables any senior to accomplish Activities of Daily Living with growing confidence and assurance.  For seniors who have lost muscle mass and bone density, a simple trip or fall may precipitate a broken hip, arm or leg necessitating a stay in the hospital; or worse, may end one’s independence and require moving to an assisted living or nursing home. 

But balance, like strength, endurance and flexibility, can be dramatically improved with a few simple exercises requiring but a few minutes a day.  Put on your sneakers, minimize that cane, use your walker less and regain the stride of your youth!

Exercise 1:
Facing the back of a chair with both hands lightly holding onto the chair’s back, rise up on your toes as if reaching for a top shelf in your kitchen.  Then lower until your heel touches the floor.  Perform this exercise for ten repetitions, rest, and then perform once again.

Exercise 2:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly upon the chair’s back.  Slowly raise your foot by bending the knee until your foot is two inches off the floor.  Hold to a count of 15 to 30.  Lower your leg and duplicate the movement with your other foot.  Repeat raising and alternating both feet five times.  Rest and then perform once again.

Exercise 3:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly upon the chair’s back.  Slowly raise your knee until your thigh is parallel with the floor.  Hold to a count of 15 to 30.  Lower your leg and duplicate the movement with your other knee.  Repeat raising and alternating both knees five times.  Rest and then perform once again.

Exercise 4:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly upon the chair’s back.  Raise the leg furthest from the chair sideways away from your body as if you were going to perform a split.  Hold for a count of 15 to 30.  Slowly bring the leg down to the floor and repeat once again.  Then, turn so your other hand is holding the chair and repeat exercise with your other leg; rest and repeat. 

Exercise 5:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly upon the chair’s back.  Slowly bring your foot backwards by bending your knee and hold for a count of 15 to 30.  Return your foot to the floor and repeat with your other leg.  Rest and then perform once again.

Exercise 6:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly upon the chair’s back.  Raise one foot slightly off the floor and cross it over other foot.  Hold for a count of 15 to 30.  Slowly bring the leg down to the floor and repeat crossover once again.  Then, turn so your other hand is holding the chair and repeat exercise with your other leg; rest and repeat. 

Hints:  Keep your abdominal muscles firm during all movements and your knees slightly bent.  As your balance improves, increase the holding count to 45 or 60 seconds.  Remember—always lightly hold onto the chair.  Good luck and have fun!

© 2019 by Fitness Senior Style. Created by www.Vertical.Guru

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