Have you ever realized how important it is to balance? From standing up to sitting down, walking and dancing, even simply standing still… we all need balance. Good balance makes everyday activities easier and prevents injuries. The Journal of American Geriatrics Society states “people involved in exercise programs experience 17% fewer falls than people who are not.” According to the National Institute of Health, U.S. hospitals have 300,000 admissions for broken hips each year, many of them seniors, and falling is often the cause of those fractures. The great news is that many of these falls can be prevented by performing a few balance exercises. These exercises strengthen leg muscles and keep the brain quick at activating the right muscles at the right time. Staying active will not only improve your balance but will have positive effects on your strength training, cardio conditioning, and flexibility!

Add these 3 exercises to your daily routine to help with your balance, posture and alignment!

1. Standing: Stand against a wall and look at your body position. Is your head falling forward, are your shoulders raised or rounded, is your lower back tilted, are your feet pointing out, are your knees bent inward? Try to lengthen and stand tall and straight. Now close your eyes and step away from the wall. How is your posture?

2. Marching: Standing in place march with your knees coming up as far as they can. Stay slow and controlled keeping your eyes forward and your posture tall. Want to make it a little more difficult? Close your eyes and keep marching.

3. Walking: Walk across the room or down the hall on your tiptoes. Then switch to walking on your heels. Now switch again, and again. Want an additional challenge? Walk with your eyes closed for a few steps.

Activity truly is one of the best things you can do for yourself, but please remember it is important to check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program.

Jennie Ribbing is a Certified Personal Trainer with the National Academy of Sports Medicine, owner of SculPT with Jen, and NASM-CPT at Maryville Boxing Club and Personal Training. If you would like to learn more about her ability to train you or a loved one please contact her at 618-409-1738 or jenribbing@yahoo.com. Your first 2 sessions are FREE! Mention Morning Glory and receive an additional session for FREE!