Why Is Balance In Physical Fitness So Important?

Balance exercise is a very important part in physical fitness, but it is often overlooked. Balance is one of the 4 different types of exercise. The other three are endurance, strength, and flexibility.  All four should be part of a workout routine.

So, why is balance in physical fitness so important?

Balance training can improve your body’s performance and flexibility, increase joint stability, and increase back strength. It can also improve your reaction time, coordination and gait speed.

Balance exercises should include strengthening the core and legs to improve stability and prevent chances of falls. High impact exercises such as running, or jumping are not necessary.

Usually balance exercises involve slow methodical movements.  If you are new with exercise, you may start with simpler exercises.

Balance Exercises For Older Adults To Do At Home

  1. Standing on one foot with the other foot raised. Hold this position for 5-15 seconds and then change to other foot and hold for 5-15 seconds. Try to build this up as you get stronger.
  2. Walking heel to toe. Try this on a balance beam or place a strip of tape on the floor and walk on the tape.
  3. Going from standing to sitting and sitting to standing without the use of your hand
  4. Doing knee lifts while walking
  5. Doing exercises such as beginners’ yoga or tai chi. 

As you progress, try holding the position longer, closing your eyes during the activity, or adding movement to a pose. 

If you are someone who is more flexible, try more exciting exercises like squats, lunges, planks or dancing. 

The balance exercises can be done daily or a couple of times per day.  Once you strengthen the core you should start to see a positive change in your overall balance. 

Some balance tools you could use to improve your balance in physical fitness include:

balance in physical fitness

Resistant bands – place above knee or at ankle and push leg out to side, back and front. This will strengthen the legs for better balance

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Balance boards are a really good way to work on balance. They come in many different styles.

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Bosu balance trainer – This is great to work and strengthen your core. It is great for stability and improving balance. Again, they come in different sizes and shapes so pick one that works best for you.

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A stability ball is another good way to work the core and strengthen the legs to promote stability and balance.

In Conclusion

Falls are one of the leading concerns for people over 60.  However, studies have found that physical decline begins in our 50’s and worsens as we age. 

Having good balance can be very important in many of your daily activities. It is important with walking, bending, getting up and down from seated or lying positions and exercise. 

So, try to fit balance exercises into your daily routine. Find the best exercises for you and your fitness level.

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