Balance Better Baby!

Do you find your balance to be a problem through the day? Whether you’re working outside on an unstable surface, climbing a ladder to change a light or whatever the case may be, it all requires some balance. I often hear people that have done little to no balance work come to the conclusion that they just have bad balance. They label balance as if it is a disease that will never be cured, and that with age will get worse and worse. “That’s just life” is the following line after the few moments of anguish and unresolved feelings around their balance. While this age/balance anomaly may be true if left unchecked, that doesn’t mean you can’t work at it and make it better through the proper interventions.


Search the web for “balance exercises” or “stability training” and you will find tons and tons of different exercises by extremely fit people doing things that look cool and definitely challenge your balance. Different exercises will be done on different unstable surfaces, such as: Bosu balls, stability balls, and other that provides a surface of instability. Some of these exercises will look more like a circus acts than actual exercises that improve your balance. Now that is not to say that these exercise don’t challenge your stability, but if you have trouble standing on one leg on the ground for 10 seconds, than standing on a rubber ball juggling weights with your eyes closed probably wont help you too much and will most likely end in an injury at some point.


So what are good exercises to challenge balance? Well, just like anything else you do in the gym you need to find the right exercise that is best for you and the place you are at today in order to set you up for success. So lets start with Exercises that place more weight on one leg, but where both feet still on the ground. After feeling comfortable with this position, you can progress to true single leg exercises.


Here are some great progressions of single leg exercises to help build strength and stability. The first progressions are hip dominant exercises, which just means you should be moving more through your hip. Then the following next three are knee dominant, which just means your should move more through your knee. Remember, find the exercise(s) that provides you a challenge but you can be successful to start.


Deadlift Variations


Stager Stance Deadlift


Slider Single Leg Deadlift


Single Leg Deadlift


Squat Variations


Split Squat


Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat


Single Leg Squat To Box

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