At Renewed after 50 we do mobility balance & agility classes

Balance is about staying upright and having control over your movements, so you don’t fall over. More scientifically, it is our ability to keep our centre of gravity (which is located right around your belly button) over our base of support (our feet), so we don’t topple over. It sounds simple enough, but it is far from it!

Balance is one complicated animal; mobility & balance exercise must be trained. Our, senses are constantly scanning the environment, assessing where we are in space and getting our muscles to respond appropriately (what we call motor output). The three primary senses we use for balance are: Vision, Proprioception, and Vestibular.

  • Our eyes (the visual system) tell us where we are in relation to our environment; when something might hit us; and obstacles we need to negotiate.
  • Our proprioception sends sensory information to our brains about the positioning of our bodies. This includes our sense of touch and an awareness of where our limbs are in space. It helps us on unstable or slippery surfaces and helps us determine appropriate counter force when we’re interacting with other objects.
  • Our vestibular system is inside our inner ear. It tells us where our head is in space and keeps us from getting dizzy when we’re swinging, swaying, and spinning.

All three systems work together, but they also must work well independently. They provide a backup for each other when the other systems can’t contribute their part. For example, when you are walking to the bathroom in the dark at night your visual system can’t help you much, so the other two senses have to kick it up a notch.

When you think about it, balance and all its components are a basic, yet incredibly phenomenal ability.

Balance gives us our ability to control our bodies—ideally, without constant, conscious thought—and allows us to do things like lean forward, move down to the floor quickly, stand very still, or walk across the room. In most cases, we do these things without giving them any thought because we have so many senses that are interacting to keep us balanced.


Balance as We Age – Balance & Fitness Classes for Older Adults

As we age, we may start to notice our balance is not as good as it was in our youth. Since balance is so complex, there are a variety of reasons this happens. Some or all of the systems we mentioned above may have started to decline. That’s why mobility exercises and balance exercises for older adults, in small classes is important.

Our vision is probably not quite as good as it once was. Our vestibular capabilities may be decreased. And our centre of gravity may have shifted significantly due to excess weight or poor posture. The senses in our hands and feet may be diminished as well.

Perhaps you’ve tried hopping on a swing at a playground in recent years. With an ageing vestibular function, what was once a thrill can feel very disorienting.

Good balance is needed for so many daily activities—navigating a parking lot, stepping onto curbs, moving past people in movie theatre, stepping over objects in our path, dancing at a wedding, hiking, etc.

It’s easy to take balance for granted in our 40s. What we don’t want is to wake up one day in our 60s and realize we don’t have the balance we need to feel safe doing the things we need to do and the things we like to do. You want to be able to take your granddaughter to the park or walk your dog or even visit the Galapagos—for years to come!

Balance agility and flexibility exercises for older adults needs to be trained and maintained.

Trusting your body and your senses when you’re navigating life is important. That’s why we will train your balance using a multidimensional approach. We will guide you through postural strategies, balance challenges, and multi-sensory and centre-ofgravity activities. The result? You will not only see improvement in balance, but in overall fitness as well.

We’ll begin with simple exercises, such as standing on one leg or walking heel to toe. As your awareness and balance improves, we may add in leg swings or practice standing on one leg with your eyes closed or even work up to balancing on squishy uneven surfaces.

Our trainers know how to incorporate many different balance challenges into workouts. The good news is that most exercises can easily be adapted to challenge and train our balance as we work on other functions—particularly mobility.

Good Mobility is Essential Too – Mobility Classes for Older Adults

Mobility is really about your ability to move. More specifically, it’s your ability to move in different ways in any environment. Of course, it can be as simple as walking and running. But, it also includes movements like getting up and down from the floor and standing up from a seated position without using your arms to steady or push yourself up. It’s also about getting around obstacles, like when your living room is full of moving boxes, or when you’re browsing a crowded farmer’s market.

Good mobility helps us navigate familiar and unfamiliar environments.

Far too often, we get to a point in life where we seldom have playgrounds or obstacle courses to challenge us and keep us young. We go to work, walk into our office, walk out of our office, and go home. The same routine every day. Once at home, we generally don’t find a lot of surprising obstacles either.

Then, we get the opportunity to go hiking somewhere, and we suddenly realize how challenging it is to step over tree roots, navigate uneven terrain, and climb over boulders on the trail. It requires a lot more mobility than the normal day-to-day activities we’re accustomed to.

 Balance & Mobility Keep Us Moving

Balance and mobility go hand in hand. While balance ensures that we stay upright and are able to control our movements, mobility directs the many types of movements that are needed in specific environments.

Both are essential for living your best life. You need balance and mobility when you play a sport, like tennis or golf, and you need them when you get up from a chair or when turning to look behind you.

Enjoyment of the things we want to do and like to do is diminished when we begin to notice challenges to our balance or mobility—when we start to struggle going up and down steps, dancing with our partner, or when dealing with difficult terrain.

For some, even turning our head to the left or right while we walk in a straight line becomes a challenge.

That’s when we start to see people opting out of hiking and biking opportunities; skipping a boat ride because they can’t climb in or out of the craft; or settling for simpler holidays because they just don’t have the physical capabilities needed to explore the world.

You may not be at a point today where your balance and mobility are keeping you from doing much. But think about the coming years. How invested are you, currently, in maintaining your balance and mobility so you can keep doing the things you need, want, and love to do for the rest of your life?

Here’s how Renewed after 50 can help, we have Personal Training and Group Fitness Classes specifically for Older Adults & Women over 50.

Contact Renewed after 50 and we’ll email you back with all the details.