Don’t Wait to Focus on Balance

Author: judyjudy

Don’t Wait to Focus on Balance

Wellness

In the journey of life, maintaining balance is not merely a physical act but a fundamental principle that extends to every aspect of our well-being. While it’s easy to overlook the importance of balance until it becomes problematic, there are compelling reasons to address it proactively. From reducing the risk of falls to enhancing overall quality of life, prioritizing balance can yield profound benefits as we age.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are a leading cause of injury and death among older adults, with the number of fall-related deaths increasing by 41% over the past decade. Each year, falls cause 3 million hospital visits and 1 million hospital stays for older adults, highlighting the critical importance of balance in maintaining independence and well-being.

Balance begins to decline after age 50, and a recent study observed that balance worsens significantly every five years, starting around 55. The same study found that the inability to balance on one leg for 10 seconds later in life was associated with a greater risk of death from all causes.

According to Dan Sivertson, physical therapist, founder, and clinic director of Pure Form Physio in Langley, Canada, “You have to start putting investments in your system now, so you have something to draw on as you age. Sometimes, you’re going to take big draws because you’re in bed for a month with an illness, injury, or surgery. You want to have a strong balance in the bank, so when you need to make withdrawals, you’ve got it.”

But where can individuals turn to assess and strengthen their balance before it becomes problematic? Fortunately, there are numerous resources available to support individuals on their journey to improved balance and well-being:

National Institute on Aging (NIA): The NIA offers valuable information and resources on aging-related health topics, including balance and falls prevention. Their website provides exercises, tips, and resources for improving balance and mobility. Explore NIA’s Balance and Falls Prevention Resources

American Council on Exercise (ACE): ACE is a trusted source of exercise science and fitness education. Their website features articles, videos, and resources on balance training exercises for people of all ages and fitness levels. Discover ACE’s Balance Training Resources

Physical Therapy Clinics: Consulting with a physical therapist can provide personalized assessment and guidance for improving balance and preventing falls. Many physical therapy clinics offer balance assessments and tailored exercise programs to address individual needs.

Community Centers and Senior Centers: Many community centers and senior centers offer group fitness classes and workshops focused on balance training and falls prevention. These programs provide opportunities for social engagement and physical activity in a supportive environment.

Online Resources and Apps: There are various online resources and smartphone apps available that offer balance training exercises and programs. These digital tools provide convenient access to guided workouts and activities that can be done at home or on the go.

By leveraging these resources and incorporating balance training into their daily routine, individuals can take proactive steps to maintain stability, prevent falls, and enhance their overall well-being. How do you prioritize balance in your life, and what strategies have you found most effective? Share your experiences and insights in our forum, and let’s continue to support each other on the journey to lifelong stability and well-being.