PT Specialties_Is Your Balance Setting You up For an Injury

IMPROVE YOUR BALANCE

TIPS & TRICKS

Back into a corner and stand just far enough away from the walls so that you are not touching the walls, but could easily use the walls to steady yourself. Cross your arms and position your feet so that you are still able to balance, but feel a little challenged. Use these pictures to figure out the right foot position for you.

• Pay attention to your feet – especially the pressure you feel on the forefoot and heel of the right and left foot. Point your toes forward to feel this more accurately. • Try to control your sway (toes equal weight to heels, right equal to left)! • When you are ready try these exercises with feet together, then with one foot in front of the other. • The goal of these exercises is for you to maintain your balance with less help from your eyes and ears. The exercises are designed to cause an “error” (increase sway) and your job is to correct this error. • NOT “Practice makes perfect” BUT “Perfect practice makes perfect.” • Control your head movements- try to move at a speed that is challenging, but also allows you to keep your balance. Move your head through your full comfortable range of motion both with eyes open and with eyes closed. • Never let the speed of your head movement be the reason you lose your balance! • Remember, you are in charge of how difficult these exercises can be.

1. Stand steady, eyes open and count to 30.

2. Stand steady, eyes open and move your head up and down

• Work up to 10 perfect repetitions.

3. Stand steady, eyes open and move your head from side to side

• Work up to 10 perfect repetitions.

4. Stand steady, eyes closed and count to 30.

5. Stand steady, eyes closed and move your head up and down.

• Work up to 10 perfect repetitions.

6. Stand steady, eyes closed and move your head from side to side

• Work up to 10 perfect repetitions

REPEAT THIS EXERCISE ROUTINE AT LEAST 3 TIMES EACH DAY!

BENEFITS OF SPRING CLEANING Allergy Symptom Reduction. A thorough cleaning can greatly reduce the amount of dust in your home, which is helpful since about 20 million Americans are allergic to dust mites, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Cleanliness Produces Happiness. Maybe you don’t enjoy the process of cleaning, but the end result will leave you smiling. A study at the University of California, Los Angeles even found that having a clean home can improve your mood and reduce your risk of depression. Declutter and Do a Good Deed by Donating. An essential part of a successful spring cleaning is getting rid of old items that are no longer used or worn. Apply the rule of thumb that if you haven’t made use of something in a year, it’s time for it to go. Fill bags and boxes of things, then donate them to a local charity so they can still be beneficial to someone else. Giving to others is an act that is associated with greater self-esteem, lower stress levels, and overall happiness.

Saxbe, DE and Repetti, R. “No place like home: home tours correlate with daily patterns of mood and cortisol.” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. January 2010. Accessed 4 April 2017. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19934011.

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