Fitness Articles

How to Improve Your Balance

woman using silks and fitness frame to support 1 leg balance

November 7, 2021



Whether we’re aware of it or not, balance is a central component of any movement we perform, from getting out of bed and sitting, to tying our shoes and walking. It requires coordination between the brain, muscles, and parts of the inner ear to keep you upright, enable you to walk without assistance, and help prevent injury.

Unfortunately, balance is a skill that follows the “use-it-or-lose-it” rule. And, since we tend to lose balance as we age–with decline typically beginning somewhere between the ages of 40 and 50–prioritizing good balance is critical to our overall health and independence.

Whether you’re currently having balance issues or are looking to maintain a good balance, you’ll want to develop a regular balance exercise routine.

The Benefits of Balance Exercises

Balance-focused exercises keep your ankles, knees, hips and core strong and offer many benefits, including the following:

  1. Reverses Age-Related Balance Loss: Although balance naturally declines as we age, doing specific exercises helps to improve balance and prevent some balance-related issues.
  2. Helps Prevent Falls:  With optimal balance, you can react more quickly to unexpected changes in the environment that cause you to trip or slip, such as a raised sidewalk or an extra stair, and be less likely to fall.
  3. Improves Posture:  Bad posture and reduced mobility in the upper back are more and more common, partially due to increasingly sedentary lifestyles. Balance exercises are excellent for posture, counteracting these negative lifestyle effects.
  4. Improves Coordination:  Balance training requires your entire body to work together, helping you avoid stumbling or falling and resulting in improved coordination. This leads to improved coordination in your day-to-day activities.
    Balance training is also extremely convenient to do and something you can easily get started with. The exercises are great for people of any age and fitness level, making them beginner-friendly, so there’s no need to be intimidated. As an added bonus, they’re also able to be done both inside and outside!

Exercises to Improve Your Balance

Balance training focuses on exercises that strengthen the muscles that help keep you upright, including your legs and core. The exercises can vary in intensity, from simple ones like standing on one leg for a period of time to challenging ones like advanced yoga poses.

One of the best ways to ensure you’re doing balance exercises properly is by using equipment that naturally makes your body stabilize itself and provides light support if needed. The design of The Fitness Frame ™ enables you to easily and efficiently perform balance exercises with good form.

woman using fitness frame to balance during yoga pose

Below are some great exercises for balance that can be done using The Fitness Frame ™.

  1. One-Leg Stands:
    Note: Before beginning, adjust the bar to hip height.
    Face the bar and stand straight. Place your hands loosely on the bar to slightly aid with balance. With your weight on one leg, raise the other leg 45 degrees to the side. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times and then switch legs.
  2. Heel-to-Toe Walking:
    Note: Before beginning, adjust the bar to hip height.
    Stand parallel to the bar at one end. Loosely place your hand on the bar and put your heel directly in front of your toe, as though you were walking a tightrope. Continue walking this way, heel to toe, along the length of the bar, and keep your hand loosely moving along the bar. When you get to the end, turn around and work your way back.
  3. Standing from a Chair:
    Note: Before beginning, adjust the bar to hip height.
    Place a sturdy chair parallel to the bar and sit in the chair. Stand up from the chair, keeping your arms at your sides so you don’t use them to help you stand. If you need a bit of extra support once you’re standing, gently hold the bar. Sit back down in a chair and repeat 5-10 times.
  4. Side-Stepping: 
    Note: Before beginning, adjust the bar to hip height.
    Face the bar with feet together, starting at the left end of the bar. With hands loosely on the bar, step to the right, then bring your left foot to meet your right foot. Continue this until you reach the other end of the bar. Repeat going back to the end you started at.
  5. Cross-Stepping: 
    Note: Before beginning, adjust the bar to hip height.
    Once you’re comfortable with the side-stepping exercise above, advance to cross-stepping. Begin the same way as you did for side-stepping and keep hands loosely on the bar. However, as you side-step to the right, cross your left leg behind. Then side-step to the right again and cross your left leg in front. Continue this pattern as you walk sideways along the bar to reach the other end. Repeat going back to the left side of the bar you started at.

As you build your balance training routine and become more comfortable with doing these exercises over time, you can improve your balance even further with these exercises by:

  • Closing your eyes to stimulate the vestibular system
  • Holding the position for a longer amount of time
  • Increasing the number of repetitions
  • Adding movement to a pose

Balance exercises can be done as much as you’d like, even every day! Enjoy doing them from the comfort of your own home or backyard at the time that works best for your schedule and lifestyle.

If you have any questions about using The Fitness Frame for balance training, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!