Balance. It is a word so prevalent now a days and it’s surfacing everywhere for a reason! Balance is key in our emotional, mental and also physical states. Training the body physically to optimize balance can help across all aspects of your training and day to day lives. Improving stability and agility is not just for athletes. Lets explore the physical side of balance and a few quick tips and tricks to get you on track to creating the stable base we all desire in our workouts and everyday encounters.
BENEFITS OF BALANCE TRAINING!
1. Burn Fat!
Alright, who doesn’t want to burn fat? If that is you? Then feel free to venture off this blog! (I don’t think we speak the same language.) It is a simple fact. The more muscles you can recruit during an exercise the more calories you are going to burn! By incorporating exercises that focus on core strength and proprioception we can improve balance and increase our caloric burn during our workouts!
2. Improve Agility
Agility isn’t just for short burst athletes. Agility is something that we require daily to avoid obstacles quickly and safely. Having good agility prepares us for all sorts of scenarios both inside and outside of the gym.
3. Prevent Injuries
Injuries come in two forms. Acute injuries and chronic injuries. By improving your balance we can help to decrease the risk of both!
ACUTE INJURIES – Acute injuries are defined as sudden and traumatic events generally brought on when we lose our balance and fall or by a lack of stability to counter an excessive amount of force.
CHRONIC INJURIES – Chronic injuries or over-use injuries are often slow in onset and tend to stem from an imbalance within the body. This can be seen as a muscle imbalance from one side of the body to the other or a deficiency in stability causing repetitive incorrect form.
SO…… Lets get balanced!!!
Find below a few great examples of exercises to improve balance!
The single leg bench raise – Seated on a bench, place one foot close to the bench and have the other leg extended. With your back straight, rise to standing position. If this poses to much difficulty, place the heel of your extended leg on the ground. WATCH VIDEO
TRX single arm row – Start with your feet together in a solid planked position. From the pulled in position lower down slowly resisting any rotational forces at the shoulders and hips. Pull up slowly and repeat. If need be place feet wider apart until you become more stable. WATCH VIDEO
Single leg kettlebell dead lift – The kettlebell should be on the same side as the grounded leg. Preform a deadlift extending the contralateral leg behind you. WATCH VIDEO
Kneeling superman with a Bosu Ball – In a table position on all fours with both knees on the Bosu Ball extend one leg behind you and the opposite arm straight out infront. Hold this position by mainting an engaged core and then switch to the other side. For added difficulty, place your grounded hand on a weighted ball. WATCH VIDEO