Having good balance is important for many daily activities such as walking and going up and down stairs. Good balance is also important for reducing the risk of injuries in the workplace.
According to the National Safety Council in 2016, 697 workers died in falls to a lower level, and another 48,060 sustained fall-related injuries that required days off work.
6 Ways to Improving Your Balance
The good news is that workplace falls are 100% preventable. Whether working from a ladder, scaffolding, or simply walking down the stairs, improving your balance can significantly reduce the risk of falling.
Just like any other exercise, balance is a skill and skills require practice. Here are six activities you can complete to improve your balance:
- Weight Shifts – A great place to start improving your balance is by incorporating weight shifts into your daily activities. Simply stand with your feet hip-width apart. Distribute your weight equally on both legs. Then shift your weight to one side and slowly lift your opposite foot. Hold that position for 30 seconds. Then lower your foot back to the ground and repeat with the other leg.
- Stand on one leg – Imagine a flamingo when completing this balance exercise. Stand strong on one leg and bring your opposite leg’s foot to either the side of your calf or knee. Build up to holding yourself for 30 seconds on each side. Try doing this while completing everyday chores such as washing dishes or folding laundry.
- Do squats – Building the muscles in your legs will help prevent stumbling. Start with a simple squat – feet hip-width apart, knees bent, and slowly lower yourself as if sitting on a chair behind you. Build up to completing 3 sets of 10.
- Walk heel to toe – The same field sobriety test police officers administer can also help improve your balance. Walk 20 steps forward, heel to toe. Then challenge yourself and walk 20 steps backwards, heel to toe.
- Back leg raises – Apart from improving your balance, this exercise will help strengthen your legs and lower back. Stand tall and lift your right leg straight backwards. Try not to bend your knees. Hold for a few seconds and then return your leg to the ground. Repeat with the other side. Build up to holding each leg for 30 seconds.
- Get a good night’s sleep – Adults need at least 7 hours of sleep per night. Any less can lead to sleep deprivation which slows reaction time and impairs balance.
Learn More to Improve Musculoskeletal Health
Having good balance, or stability is just one piece to your musculoskeletal health. Maintaining a healthy musculoskeletal system is one of the biggest drivers for preventing sickness and injury throughout life.
Briotix Health is here to help you learn more about how to improve the musculoskeletal health of your workforce. Our tailored solutions are built to meet the needs of you and your employees to significantly impact worker health, reduce workplace injuries, and save companies money.
To learn more contact Briotix Health and speak with a Solutions Advisor.