Everyone knows that strength and flexibility are vital when it comes to having a healthy back. But what many people do not realize is that Balance is just as important, if not more so. The vast majority of back injuries can happen in an instant; whether it is from a misstep, fall, accident, or some other means. The way that your body reflexively responds to these sudden instances can help limit any injury or maybe even prevent it altogether!
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Balance issues have increased over the last few decades, and along with this has been an increase in lower back pain. A lot of our balance depends on various amounts of stimulation on our feet. However, as time has passed people have started sitting more, walking less and on flat and smooth surfaces, and wearing shoes with cushioned soles. All of these have led to less stimulation on our feet, which has caused people to have poor balance.
Balance training is a form of treatment used to help increase balance, and it is a great way to help treat several health problems, including lower back pain. Studies have shown that just training daily for 2 weeks can improve a person's balance by at least 200%. It has also been shown to increase strength in the thighs and lower legs. A simple exercise that can be done at home to improve balance is called the Single Leg Standing Balance Exercise:
- Perform this exercise in a doorway at first until you are more comfortable with it.
- The exercise is simple: just stand on one foot and stare straight ahead. Try to hold this pose for 30 seconds without moving or holding on to anything.
- If you cannot hold the pose for 30 seconds, just keep doing it until the total time holding it is 30 seconds. Then switch feet.
- Once you can hold the position for 30 seconds on each foot, start doing it with your eyes closed.
- When that has been mastered, try holding the pose on a surface that is less stable, like a cushion or slanted surface.
- For this exercise to be effective it should be done 2 times a day for each foot.
By just doing this simple exercise on a regular basis, you can greatly improve your balance and relieve your lower back pain!
At the Illinois Back Institute we strive to educate everyone as much as possible about their back pain and sciatica, because it is proven that the more people know about their problem the more likely they are to eliminate it!
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