what is balance

What is Balance?

Every year, countless Americans are diagnosed as having “abnormal” balance. It is quite common; you are not alone.

Balance is the ability to maintain your body position over your feet. In simple terms, it is your ability to not fall. Balance can be further subdivided into static and dynamic balance. Static balance is your ability to maintain postural control while standing still, while dynamic balance is your ability to maintain line of gravity and orientation while your base of support is in motion.

Balance is a complex system. For ideal function, balance requires input from the vestibular system (inner ear), visual system, somatosensory system, and muscular system. Over the years people generally become reliant on one of these systems while others deteriorate. Did you know: People who suffer from visual disorders naturally adapt and compensate with increased awareness in the other postural sensations. The body is pretty amazing!

There are varying degrees of “abnormal” balance. Some are more severe, and some are of minor concern. Every balance case is unique, and everyone has different goals when it comes to correcting and/or creating the new “normal” for themselves. There are certain conditions that may place you at a disadvantage when it comes to balance, including age, neurological diseases, musculoskeletal injuries, deafness/blindness, and more. At SportsCare Physical Therapy, we provide treatments for a number of patients who experience trouble with balance.

Balance Treatment

We start with a detailed evaluation examining the vestibular system, visual reliance, sensation, and muscular system. Through training and progressive stimulation performed intermittently in the clinic and every day at home, symptoms slowly resolve, and balance increases. A couple of exercises that will improve balance include:

Tandem Stance
tandem stance

Single Limb Balance

single limb balance

Lower Extremity
Strengthening

lower extremity strengthening

These three exercises are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to training for improved balance. The skilled professionals at SportsCare will tailor a program to meet your needs given your individual situation. When performing balance exercises on your own, the most important thing to remember is SAFETY! Give one of our SportsCare clinics a call or request an appointment online to get started today!