Why do we need to do balance exercises?
Last week we looked at how our balance system works, this week we will look at how balance exercises can be fun. Our body processes information from our eyes, our inner ear system and our somatosensory system (knowing where our body is in space) to help us keep our balance . When there is damage to one of these systems, our body will need to compensate and learn rely more on the systems that are working.
What sort of conditions can cause damage to these systems?
Sometimes there will damage to our nervous systems. Some conditions that can cause these include:
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Meniere’s Disease
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Peripheral Neuropathy
There are many other disease that can affect you balance, these are just some of them.
Is it safe to practice balance exercises on my own?
Our first priority is that you are safe doing your exercises. Your physiotherapist will aim to make the exercises of medium difficulty. If they are too easy, you won’t be working hard enough to challenge your balance, if they are too hard you might fall over.
Some strategies your physiotherapist may utilise to keep you safe may include:
- Showing you how to set yourself up at home to do the exercises safely
- Teaching someone how they can help you do the exercises
- Organising a Therapy Assistant to come and do the exercises with you
What sort of balance exercises might you get me to do?
The exercises we get you to do will depend on several factors including what is causing your balance problems, what tasks you have difficulty balance with and what your goals are. You will be assessed by your physiotherapist to help find the best exercises for you.
We try to keep our exercises interesting, and use a variety of tools to make them more fun. Here are some picture of our clients doing balance exercises.
Can I do balance exercises in the pool?
Yes, aquatic physiotherapy can be used to do exercises in the pool. There is studies that show aquatic therapy can help improve there balance on land. Lots of our clients enjoy doing balance exercises in the pool. It can be a safe way to do balance exercises, and also fun. At SCNR we utilise various equipment in the pool when we do balance exercises.
If you are having trouble with you balance and would like some exercises to help you, you can give us a call to make an appointment on 07 5448 1155 or email [email protected]
Rebekah McClellan, Titled APA Research Physiotherapist
Neve Cavanagh, Physiotherapist, APA Member
Douris, Peter PT, EdD; Southard, Veronica PT, MS, GCS; Varga, Celia PT, MS; Schauss, William PT, MS; Gennaro, Charles PT, MS; Reiss, Arthur PT, MS The Effect of Land and Aquatic Exercise on Balance Scores in Older Adults, Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy: April 2003 – Volume 26 – Issue 1 – p 3-6
Marinho-Buzelli AR, Bonnyman AM, Verrier MC. The effects of aquatic therapy on mobility of individuals with neurological diseases: a systematic review. Clinical Rehabilitation. 2015;29(8):741-751. doi:10.1177/0269215514556297