Improving your balance may not be number one on your priority list, but maybe it should be. Balance falls into the same category as flexibility, core strength, and mobility.
These are all things our bodies need to function efficiently, but many of us don’t actually do exercises to improve them. If you exercise regularly, you already work on your balance without even knowing it. But, just because you exercise doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement.
Here are a few ideas to get started on improving your balance:
Check out these new-fangled balancing tools to really help you remain stable in an unstable environment. Playing around with fitness tools like the ones listed below can also help you gain more stability and balance, as well as help you strengthen your core.
The Bongo Board is great for improving balance and coordination. It looks like a skateboard but has a rotating wheel underneath that allows you to maneuver it in any direction whether your indoors or outdoors. The grippers on top keep your feet in place so you won’t fall off.
The informational packet that comes with the board warns you to use a spotter the first time and that’s because it is difficult to find your balance at first. Without help, you may find yourself flying headfirst into the wall. Once you get the hang of it, you won’t be able to stop using it. Some basic exercises you can do include pushups, squats, and upper body weight training exercises while standing on it.
Another great tool for balance is the exercise ball or stability ball. The stability ball is great because of its versatility. You can use it to strengthen your core muscles (abs, back, and pelvic floor) and, meanwhile, you’re automatically working on your balance and internal stabilizers.
You can also use your ball for stretching exercises, and you can even use it as a weight bench to perform upper body exercises like chest presses and pushups.
The wobble board is another popular item on the market these days. Like the Bongo Board, the wobble board is used to help improve balance and agility. Most wobble boards are circular and have a sphere underneath that adjusts to different angles according to your skill level. You can do squats, lunges, or upper body exercises while standing on it to add a balance challenge to your workouts.
There are also ways to make your own stability equipment at home. The next time you lie down for weight training exercises, place a rolled-up towel lengthwise under your back and try to balance on it while lifting.
Or, stand on a couch cushion while doing standing exercises, such as bicep curls or overhead presses. The key when it comes to balance training is to start slowly. It’s easy to hurt yourself if you don’t take your time and allow your body to get used to being in an unstable environment.