Did you know that how well you balance offers an insight into your general health and age?
Last year, the UK’s MRC (Medical Research Council) tested a group of 53 year olds’ balance. They found that those that could stand on one leg for 10 seconds with their eyes closed were most likely to be fit and well in 13 years’ time.
Your balance can be affected by problems with your inner ear, deterioration in your eyesight, and slower input from joints and muscles that tell the brain where you are in space and like all things, if you don’t use it you will start to lose it. However, you can do simple exercises to train your balance and keep yourself healthy…such as practising balancing on one foot…and when that becomes easy try it with your eyes closed.
The Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy devised a test so that you can determine your biological age depending on how long you can balance on one leg with your eyes closed. Here are some of their predictions:
45 seconds = under 40 years with eyes open…15 seconds with eyes closed
41 seconds = 50-59 years with eyes open…8 seconds with eyes closed
32 seconds = 60-69 years with eyes open…4 seconds with eyes closed
22 seconds = 70-79 years with eyes open…3 seconds with eyes closed
Well worth a bit of practise to get your age down!! I have included balance exercises in my book, Play Tennis Forever,
as not only will they help keep you younger and healthier, they will also help your tennis…a win win!