Perhaps you occasionally adopt the sarcastic nickname "Grace" and have had to laugh off a clumsy moment more than once. Balance training benefits people of all ages and activity levels. More than simply losing the sarcastic nickname, benefits of balance training also include corrected alignment, improved stability, strengthened muscles and prevented injuries. Simply add a five-minute balance training segment to your already-existing workout routine or take five minutes in the morning or night to complete the exercises.
Bosu Ball Leg Raise
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart on top of a Bosu ball (a piece of exercise equipment shaped like half a stability ball) and hands on your hips. Balancing on the ball, lift one knee up to the chest. Hold for three seconds and lower to standing. Lift the same knee, this time to the side. Hold for three seconds and lower to standing. Repeat this same sequence on the other leg. Complete 10 total lifts on each leg daily. Simple balance tips include keeping the core flexed and picking a point to focus the eyes on throughout the leg lifts.
Bosu Ball Hip Abduction
Stand on top of a Bosu ball with your feet shoulder-width apart and hands resting on your hips. Balancing on the ball, raise the right leg, foot flexed, straight out to the side. Lower back to standing. Repeat with the left leg. After five lifts on each leg, complete five more lifts per leg adding a three-second hold with the leg lifted at its highest point. To increase intensity, add a small pulse in the lifted leg while at its highest point. Remember to flex the core, and pick a point ahead to focus on.
Yoga Warrior 3 Pose
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Start with your feet firmly planted shoulder-width apart and both arms extended above the head, tight against the ears. Slowly bend at the waist, dropping your torso, arms and head and simultaneously lifting a leg. The position should become horizontal with the arms, torso and lifted leg parallel to the floor. Hold the position for one to two minutes and repeat with the opposite leg. Again, remember a tight core is key in balancing.
Yoga Tree Pose
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and arms resting at your sides. Lift one leg up and rest the bottom of your foot against the opposite leg on the side of the knee or on the inner thigh. Once balance is achieved, raise both arms straight up, tight against the ears, until palms are pressed against each other overhead. Hold for one to two minutes and repeat lifting the other leg. Maintaining a flexed core is essential for balancing in the Yoga Tree Pose.
Kylie Rae Cobb is a wellness coach for a corporate wellness company and an enthusiastic exercise class instructor. She has a degree in public health from Brigham Young University and a 500-hour yoga teacher certification from Yoga Alliance.