simple exercises for balance-challenged

As you may know, I am trying to improve my strength and stamina since losing so much during my hospitalization late last year. While using my walker to stride through my place three of four times in a row might help with the stamina, it does nothing to improve my balance, which, basically, sucks.

Based on my physical therapy and dance history, I put together a little exercise routine that is for me quite challenging. I hope to progress and be able to increase the intensity, but for now I am trying to do all the exercises in a day. If not, I will alternate three or four day by day. I thought I would share this for anyone else who might like to try reducing some of that wobble in your step. Maybe we will all get to the point to be stealthy of step.

Exercise instructions and reminders. Consult with your doctor before performing any exercise on your own.

For all start at a level you feel comfortable and are not straining. After you know what number of repetitions is good for you personally, use that as a base. After ten days consider increasing the intensity with increments of 2 or 5 repetitions. Also, after achieving the benefit of better balance, consider doing exercises while standing, of course, with support at first. Remove support only after you are confident you can manage without wobbling. No good will come if you get injured from rushing it.

If you do these leisurely, especially at first, and not necessarily all at once, they can take up to about 30 minutes with the needed rests in between the exercises. It is definitely easier to do them, say, two exercises at a time than to do too many and exhaust your muscles. If you are very weak, it will be a lot of work to do some of these. Notice, too, that all of these start sitting and progress to standing positions. None involve getting down on the floor. With balance issues that is less than a good idea.

  1. Just-the-foot circles
  2. Knee raises while seated
  3. Forward leg extensions while seated
  4. Heel raises sitting and standing
  5. Standing: backward leg curls
  6. Side leg raises: at first, sit and move leg to side; progression: stand and lift leg up sideways
5 6 7 8
© 2004–2013 Donna Peach. All rights reserved.

5 responses to “simple exercises for balance-challenged

  1. Another really simple thing to try is while you are holding on to something – walker, counter, etc, just try lifting up one foot off the floor – not high, just off the floor. Hold it up for a second or two and then try the other foot.

  2. Donna a.k.a. Jane Fonda….I see you in your workout clothes, headband, and the music blasting! LOL! You are such a dear, sweet woman. Posting help for others. Hugs and much love!

  3. These are wonderful and helpful suggestions. I am going to use them with my mom as she is recovering from heart surgery. Thank you for sharing with such a calm and grateful spirit. Always praying…..

  4. Donna, this is brilliant! I love the knee lifts for the quads! The 1. Foot circles can be done clockwise and then counterclockwise. This is so helpful for people.

  5. Fantastic thank you xxxx

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