Regular balance exercises are important - at any age. But why? Well, through balance exercises you train your deep muscles, your coordination and your balance. This trio is responsible for ensuring that you firstly don't wobble so easily and secondly, if you do wobble, you catch yourself easily and quickly. In this way, you actively prevent falls and their unpleasant consequences. "And how can I improve my balance, train my equilibrium?", you are probably asking yourself now. It's quite simple: with effective exercises that you can easily integrate into your everyday life. Let's get started right away.
Balance exercises - the basis for (almost) all sports
First, here's a bit of smart-ass knowledge about the sense of balance. The sense of balance is not just ONE sense, but it is made up of FOUR components. With the organ of balance in your inner ear, the vestibular apparatus, you perceive both gravity and acceleration - an important part of balancing your equilibrium. In addition, you have depth sensitivity, which helps you keep track of the position and activity of your muscles, tendons and joints. In combination with your sense of touch and, of course, your visual perception for spatial orientation, your sense of balance is created. As you can see, these are highly complex processes that occur almost automatically in your brain and body in milliseconds. But even if their function may seem reflexive to you, that doesn't mean it can't be trained through balance exercises.
On the contrary, you should actually train it. Absolutely. Because the sense of balance is not only essential for almost every movement in your everyday life, but also for practicing (almost) every sport. Example: How long do you have to be able to stand on one leg to progress in yoga? Depending on the exercise, already a few (many) seconds. And of course, it's shaky at first, but gets better over time. By doing balance exercises regularly, you train your balance, you perfect your coordination, you strengthen your deep muscles. That's why it's so important to train your balance. And now we'll show you the right exercises for balance training.
What balance exercises are there?
Now you want to know, "How can I train my balance?" You can do this in two different ways - once without equipment in between in everyday life and once with different equipment very specifically and intensively. When training your balance, it is always important to do the balance exercises consciously and in a controlled manner. So it's better to start small and increase slowly, instead of going all out with balance training. For this reason, we want to start with the everyday balance exercises first. Once you've integrated these into your daily routine on a regular basis over a period of seven to fourteen days, then you can take the next step with equipment balance exercises.
Balance exercises without equipment
In everyday life, you can do many balance exercises without equipment. Just in between, for example as a short break while working at your desk. You don't need a lot of space for balance exercises, and they don't make you sweat. Let's take the one-legged "tiptoe stand" for example. To do this, stand normally, then bend your left leg so that your lower leg is at a 90-degree angle to the back and push up on the balls of your feet or toes. Hold this position for about five to ten seconds. Then switch sides. Each side may be used at least three times. During the entire exercise, try to stand as still as possible and perform all movements in a controlled manner.
Other standing balance exercises are "drawing with the foot" and the "balance". Here, too, it is important to balance on one leg - but in a different way. In "drawing with the foot" you stretch your left leg diagonally forward and draw circles or other shapes in the air with your toes. After ten seconds, switch legs and repeat the exercise at least three times on each side - this is the best way to train your balance. A little tip: Try the entire movement sequence with your eyes closed and feel the difference. Afterwards you can train your balance with the "balance". Extend your right arm forward and the opposite left leg backward. Now try to keep your leg and arm at the same height without wobbling for about ten seconds. Then switch sides, repeating the exercise at least three times per side.
Balance training with equipment
Now that you've integrated a few balance exercises into your daily routine, let's move on to the next step in balance training - using equipment. Using equipment for balance training is of course also possible. Let's start with a "device" that everyone has at home: a towel. Roll it up lengthwise, lay it on the floor and balance forward from one end to the other. Then don't turn back, but walk backwards to your starting point. And another improvement: Try "balancing on the towel" with your eyes closed.
In addition to a simple towel, there are of course numerous special devices for balance exercises. For example, you can train your balance on a balance ball. In principle, all exercises that are also good for your balance on the floor work on it - only it is much more difficult on the Balance Ball. Try it out! Rocking or seesaw boards are also designed for professional balance exercises. These are available in various designs, for example with balls or rubber ropes under the board. Here you can train your balance by simply standing on it with one leg at a time. You control the level of difficulty here by adjusting the balls or attached rubber bands underneath. If standing on these boards works, you can of course dare to lift one leg and move it in different directions. Here, your intramuscular coordination and body tension will be challenged... and promoted. Clearly, this type of equipment is more effective at training your balance than balance exercises on a mat, but unfortunately these gadgets are often quite expensive. However, there are devices for coordination exercises that you can also use in other ways - for pure fun and cool tricks. We are talking about balance boards. With them you can easily train your balance on the side.
Balance exercises with a balance board
Train your sense of balance, strengthen your deep muscles, improve your coordination... it's all easy with a balance board. Because: With balance boarding, the focus is not really on training, but on having fun. At first, you might feel a bit wobbly on the board, but that will soon go away. Just stand on it hip-width apart and balance calmly in this position. You feel yourself, recognize your center of gravity, gain confidence and you can start with the first, easy movements.
Your first balance exercises on the Balance Board are, for example, a squat, a Hang Ten or a Ninety. For the squat, you stand on the balance board with your legs wide apart and facing sideways, calmly find your balance and then slowly squat down. Sounds easy, but at the beginning of the balance board training it is quite a challenge. Try it three, four, five times - then you will already notice the first successes. Your movements are now much more controlled, because you are already getting closer to your inner center. As an extension to the squat, you can try the Hang Ten. Stand on your board facing forward and slowly walk from the center to the front of your board. You have to balance yourself step by step - this has to be practiced!
Once you have mastered these two balance exercises, it's best to use your flow and continue directly with the Ninety. Stand sideways on your balance board with your legs wide apart and then turn 90 degrees including the board on the roller. This requires momentum, but be careful: too much momentum and you lose your balance. So move slowly and controlled in small and safe steps. And keep in mind: the fun on the balance board has just begun with these simple balance exercises. Quicker than you can say "balance board", you'll be doing the coolest tricks, jumps and flips. By the way, there are countless of them, all just waiting to be rocked by you in the coming days, weeks and months.
More fun with the right balance exercises & cool tricks
So, finally, we'd like to show you a few more challenging balance exercises for lots of fun on the balance board. First we have the Hippy Jump, then the Bunny Hop and the most difficult of these three is the Hands Board Drop. In the Hippy Jump you stand on your balance board with your legs turned sideways. First find your balance and then bounce upwards briefly. Once you've landed, the goal is to regain your balance as quickly as possible. The Bunny Hop is the next step up from the Hippy Jump. Here you hop upwards and also turn around so that you land on your balance board facing forwards. Wow, that's quite a feat. But you can do it!
To top off these balance exercises, you can try the Hands Board Drop. This one starts with the balance board in your hand, so it's rather unusual. Here's how it works: throw your balance board in a sweeping motion onto the center of the roller and hop right behind it, facing sideways onto the balance board. Then you have to find your balance as fast as lightning and... tadaa... now you are officially a balance board pro. Because this trick is really not easy. That's why we also have a little tip for you. Don't just use your arms to balance, but try to activate your abdominal tension and thus a stable posture already in the jump.
Balance training - of course in our wahu community
These three tricks or exercises for balance, deep muscles and agility will rapidly improve your sense of balance, we promise. And we promise you one more thing: You will have a lot of fun and won't want to stop training your balance. Be creative and come up with your own personal balance exercises. Record them on video and share them with our wahu community on Facebook or Instagram. We're always looking forward to new members and workout ideas. Take a look!