Numerous medical studies indicate that after a person reaches their mid-twenties, a person’s ability to balance begins to decline and inversely, so does a person’s risk of falling increases.
Good balance is often associated with strong core strength, which in turn improves a person’s posture, enhances overall physical performance and reduces back pain.
Benchmarking Your Progress
As a benchmark to measure how well your balance is improving, stand on one leg with your eyes closed and time yourself until you need to return your other leg to the ground. As your balance improves, so will the length of time that you are able to remain balanced on one leg with your eyes closed.
In fundamental terms, balance is an even distribution of weight, which enables a person to remain upright and stable in sometimes challenging actions.
A person’s body and brain maintains balance by managing sensory information from nerves and muscles.
Balance in Taekwon-Do
Balance is an important aspect a person must develop/improve to successfully perform Taekwon-Do. Much of the exercises undertaken during ITF SEQ classes focuses on enhancing a student’s ability to balance as well as improving muscular strength. One of the key components that an ITF SEQ instructor tries to ensure is that students are training to improve their balance and muscular strength without pushing themselves too far and causing injuries.
Improving Balance Beyond the Taekwon-Do Class
As a person’s body ages, the ability to manage sensory information slows down and in turn a person’s ability to balance declines. However regardless of age, everyone can improve their ability to balance and stem the rate of decline.
Maintaining your fitness, with the help of attending ITF SEQ classes, certainly helps to preserve your balancing skills. In addition, there are activities you can undertake to augment your balance. Here are a few examples.
Close your eyes and stand with your feet together. As your body begins to sway open your eyes and start again. The more you undertake this activity, the length of time you are able to keep your eyes closed without swaying will increase.
Stand on one leg with your eyes open. If you begin to sway, bend your supporting knee. As with the activity above, the more you try this one, the better your balance will become. As you become more confident with this exercise, try it with your eyes closed.
Start with your feet shoulder width apart, raise onto the balls of your feet and repeat this ten times. If you are unstable with this activity, support yourself with a hand on a wall.
To increase the challenge of this activity, do it with your eyes closed.
Your balance will improve by the practice of standing on solid and steady platforms or objects. For example, walking along a wall or the edge of curb and channelling.
There are a myriad of balance improving activities to try and a search of the internet will give you a great range of activities to try to improve your balance.