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Better Balance: Not Just for Gymnasts, Essential for Everyday Life

By Claudine Aherne October 11, 2023 Health and Fitness

Have you ever stopped to consider how balance affects your daily activities?

Until we notice changes in our balance, we think it’s only needed for gymnastics or ice skating.

However, what many of us don’t realize is how crucial balance is for everyday activities. We take it for granted until we start to experience difficulties with our balance.

Understanding the importance of balance can empower us to take action to maintain or improve it, enriching our daily lives.

Keep reading to find out which daily activities rely on good balance. You’ll read stories from people like you who have improved their balance and noticed the difference in their everyday lives.

Graceful Gardening

Good balance is essential in the garden, especially for stepping around pots or over bedding plants, reaching to prune roses, and walking on uneven ground.

If you’re a keen gardener, you know that once you start, it’s hard to stop. But fatigue can affect our balance, making us more prone to tripping.

Meet Sarah, a 69-year-old gardening enthusiast. Working in the garden was becoming a struggle as she felt more unsteady on her feet. But, after incorporating balance exercises into her routine, she’s back to tending her roses and herbs with ease. ‘I can now kneel to pull weeds and stand back up without any help, all thanks to focusing on my balance,’ says Sarah.

Playtime with Grandchildren

When you’re with your grandchildren, you want to be fully present and focused on them.

You don’t want to just watch them play, you want to get involved and join in the fun. Good balance gives you the freedom to run, jump, and play in all kinds of activities.

Tom, a 68-year-old grandfather, found himself sitting out of his grandchildren’s playtime due to balance concerns. After committing to a balance training programme, he’s back to being the ‘fun grandpa,’ even playing tag and hopscotch. ‘I never thought I’d be able to keep up with them again, but here I am, and it feels fantastic,’ Tom beams.

Travel with Confidence

Whether getting to your destination or enjoying it once you arrive, good balance can make travel more enjoyable and less stressful.

Meet Linda, a retired teacher and avid traveller. She started feeling anxious about her upcoming European vacation due to balance issues. After focusing on improving her balance, she not only enjoyed her trip but also managed to hike a small hill in the French countryside. ‘I felt so confident and free, like I had regained a part of myself,’ Linda shares.

Mastering Steps, Stairs, and Kerbs

Stairs at home might be manageable, but in public places like train stations or art galleries, they can be a real challenge. Especially if they’re steep or lack handrails.

John, a 75-year-old culture buff, found himself avoiding places with stairs or steps without handrails. He decided to take action and started a balance-focused exercise program. Now, he confidently takes the stairs and enjoys going to theaters, museums and exhibitions that he had been avoiding. ‘It’s like I’ve expanded my world again,’ says John.

Exercise your stepping with this video:

Walking Wonders

Walking on uneven ground, like cobblestones or paths in the park, requires good balance.

Emily, a 67-year-old artist, loved her morning walks but started to feel unsteady on uneven terrain and even tripped on some cracked paving. She took up balance exercises and now enjoys her nature walks more than ever. ‘I can walk on the bumpy paths of my favorite park without fear. It’s liberating,’ Emily exclaims.

Here’s an exercise to strengthen your ankles so you can walk more easily.

For more tips and video guidance, read 5 TIPS FOR WALKING WELL: FEEL MORE CONFIDENT WALKING TODAY.

What Matters Most to You?

Are you a keen gardener, a travel enthusiast, or someone who takes great joy in spending time with your grandchildren? Do you love spending time out in nature or prefer contemplating the nuances of a famous painting?

Whatever your answer, you’ll want to do everything you can to improve your balance so you can feel steady on your feet and confident to keep doing all the things that matter to you.

Kickstart Your Journey to Better Balance

Everyone can improve their balance with the right exercise programme. And just a few minutes a day is enough.

The FREE Balance Blueprint from Vida Wellness can help you if you want to start doing exercises that are tailored specifically to those who need improvement with their balance.

Join the Conversation:

I hope you’ve found this article helpful. What resonated with you from the activities listed? What would you like to maintain or improve your balance for? We’d love to hear from you. Join the conversation below!

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The Author

Over the last 16 years, Claudine has helped hundreds of people to improve their balance, feel stronger and move more easily. That's why her in-person classes and online programmes have been featured globally, including on BBC Radio 4. Members of her online exercise studio enjoy an extensive library of easy-to-follow videos, as well as advice and support. Try some taster videos from the Vida Wellness Studio.

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