We often strive to find a balance within our work life and personal life or find balance within ourselves emotionally, mentally and physically. Yoga can help us achieve balance in these areas AND it can also improve our actual physical sense of balance.
As we get older, our balance can diminish due to a variety of factors such as decreased vision, loss of muscle strength or range of motion, blood pressure changes, or side effects of medication, just to name a few. Losing our ability to balance puts us at a higher risk for falls and injury.
Maintaining our balance is dependent upon a complex combination of muscle strength and input from the nervous, visual and vestibular systems as well as the condition of our joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons. All these factors must work together to orient us and maintain our position as we move our bodies. Yoga has proved to be one of the best ways to improve balance and decrease falls.
In yoga, we use static and dynamic standing postures to help improve our balance and address the contributing factors that lead to imbalance (muscle strength, joint mobility, etc)
If you'd like to practice some yoga and balance with me, you can watch the video below or you can join me in either my Chair Yoga class or my Yoga for Strength and Stability class where we work on balance.
If you're interested in reading a systematic review of the evidence on yoga improving balance, click here.