One of the most underutilized tools in injury prevention, sports performance, and overall health and wellness is the ability to balance. It’s a skill worth continually improving since it eliminates injuries such as ACL tears in the athletic population and fall risks in senior age groups. Indeed, persons without the ability to maintain a balanced standing position for at least five seconds have an increased susceptibility to injury.
The best way to test your balance is the one-legged stand test, ideally performed with and without eyes open. As we age, our balance will steadily decrease, even more so if one does not work on it. To accomplish this test, stand on one leg with eyes open and time how long you can stand without a significant weight shift or the other foot touching the ground. Perform test again, this time with eyes closed.