Retirement is nothing to lose your balance over.
Dr. Alicia Arbaje said, “weakness and loss of balance are usually symptoms of inactivity, not old age”.
There is some decline in our balance as we age. This is normal.
It concerns retired and aging people because we have all heard of a senior who has fallen. They have fractured a bone or hit their head, and have never been the same. We don’t want it to happen to us.
As seniors, there could be several reasons for loss of balance.
Our vision could be getting worse. If we can’t see clearly, we may fall. If we are taking medications, they can interact and cause dizziness. Even low blood pressure can cause dizziness and loss of balance. An inner ear infection can cause us to be lightheaded. Loss of balance is not always because of normal aging or inactivity.
Is there anything we can do about our loss of balance?
Two Ways To Fight Loss Of Balance
There are a couple of ways to fight our loss of balance. One is by staying active. The second is by doing some specific exercises that can improve our balance.
1) Staying Active To Avoid Loss Of Balance
Staying active and exercising does not necessarily mean going to a gym.
a. Walking is a natural movement for the body. Brisk walking will get your heart rate up. It will also provide many benefits to your body, including improving your balance.
b. Swimming is a gentle movement for the body. It will also improve your balance.
c. Riding a bicycle can strengthen your leg muscles. And the act of balancing the bike will help your body improve its balance.
d. Bowling, tennis, yoga, and dancing are also great ways of staying active as retirees. They also improve our balance.
What staying active comes down to is you. Do what is comfortable for you.
If you don’t like an activity, try something else!
2) Exercises To Improve Balance
There are many specific exercises that we can do at home to improve balance. These exercises will also help prevent our loss of balance.
The only equipment you need is a straight back chair, a wall, or a countertop to grab, or touch, for support if needed.
a. Walk in a straight line, placing your heel directly in front of the toes of your other foot. Need a line? Follow the grout line between the tiles on the floor. Or use blue painters tape and make a line. The blue tape will not leave residue on the floor as other tapes might.
b. Without holding on to anything, raise up on your toes 10 times. Repeat, only this time with your eyes closed.
c. Stand on one leg with your eyes closed. Try to improve your time.
If these exercises aren’t your thing, do an internet search. There are many other examples out there in the internet world.
Some loss of balance is due to aging. Most loss of balance is due to inactivity.
Staying active as a retiree will help prevent loss of balance. Staying active can also help improve your balance.
Some of the many activities you can try are bike riding, brisk walking, swimming, or yoga.
Find activities you like! Activities that you will do!
Another way to improve your balance is with some specific exercises. Most of these exercises we can do in our home. Most need no equipment other than a wall or straight back chair.
Are you staying active and doing some specific balance exercises? Are you still losing your balance? Please see your doctor. It could be your vision or the medications you are taking.
Let’s stay active and not lose our balance over retirement.
Next, we will be talking about staying active and social interaction. Cards anyone?