Five years ago I had my second back surgery. I don’t want to have a third. Surgery and drugs can really take a toll on your back, legs, nerves, and muscles. It was afterward that I learned about physical therapy, Pilates and core strength. Now I attend a class at the YMCA twice a week for core strength and balance.
I’ve learned a lot about the correlation between core strength and balance in my little class at the Y. My instructor thinks she is a drill sergeant and if you can do one hundred sit ups on the balance ball, she is convinced you can do two hundred next week.
I always thought I lacked balance because of an inner ear problem. The inner ear does have something to do with balance, but in my case it was because I didn’t depend upon the muscles of my core to take care of me. They were flabby and out of shape and I never really tried very hard to strengthen them.
I found a great way to cultivate balance is on a balance ball. These large blow up balls are cheap and a great way to sit and watch TV in the evening forcing you to improve your posture. They are great for push-ups and sit ups without hurting your back and all the while working the side muscles of the abs at the same time. Your body has to work extra hard to keep from slipping off the ball while you sit up.
There are also ways to work on your balance doing everyday chores. For example, stand on one foot while you brush your teeth or cook dinner. When you drop something small lean over and pick it up with one foot off the floor. Practice putting your pants on in the morning while standing on one foot and lifting the other to step into the pants instead of sitting down. Be sure to suck in your belly before you do these moves to protect your back. Your body will thank you in the long run. You will be strengthening your legs as well as that flabby core.
Physical balance is important in life as well as mental and emotional balance. What do you do to improve your physical balance – let’s discuss it.