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California Foot & Ankle Institute

Balance Exercises for Seniors

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Older man practicing yoga outsideIt likely comes as no surprise that age makes some things just not function as well as they once had. Unfortunately, our bodies tend to be among that company. It would be ideal if we were more like a fine wine than a fence gate, but time often takes its toll on our joints and muscles, making us work harder to maintain balance and coordination. The good news is that we can help counteract the toll of years, and exercise can help.

Many balance exercises are easy to do in the comfort of your own home, with some using furniture for support. One such routine involves standing by counter or table, just in case. Lift your right foot a bit, then use your right arm to brush the upper left corner of your mouth (as if you were brushing your teeth) for 30 seconds. Repeat with your left foot and left arm, then your left foot and right arm, and finally your right foot and left arm.

We suppose doing such an exercise in your own home also prevents people from asking what you’re doing, but this is seriously a good exercise for coordination.

Another exercise that involves a bit more room is the balance walk. For this routine, raise your arms out to the sides, at shoulder height. Focus your eyes on a spot ahead of you, then walk straight ahead with one foot in front of the other. As you move, lift your back leg, pausing for a second before stepping it forward. Repeat, alternating your legs, for about 20 steps.

A multitude of additional easy exercises exist for helping restore and maintain stability. The doctors at California Foot and Ankle Institute can help you choose the right moves based on your needs, as well as offer other aids to help prevent falls. Schedule an appointment by phoning either of our offices: (760) 951-2000 for Victorville or (949) 833-3406 for Irvine. You can also contact us toll-free at (888) 796-6631.

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