Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Readers' Workouts ~ flexibility and balance

This week, I want to focus on flexibility and balance.  The chart above shows stretches to help the lower back (flexibility), and the list below has ten exercises to help with balance.  I use a chair for support and don't need to repeat it in each of these ten exercises.

1.  Heel-to-toe walk
•  Focus on a spot directly in front of you and take a step forward with one foot, placing the heel directly in front of the toes of the other foot, so that heel and toe almost touch.
•  Take 20 steps.
2.  Stand on one foot
•  Lift one foot off the ground with your knee bent, and hold for 10 seconds.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times with each leg.
3.  Weight shift
•  Stand with legs hip-width apart and feet flat on the floor.
•  Lift one foot several inches and hold for 10 seconds.  Repeat with the other foot.
•  Repeat 10 times on each side.
4.  Leg raise walk
•  Stand with arms out to the sides at shoulder height, staring at a point across the room to maintain your balance.
•  Lift one leg and hold it up for a second before bringing it down in front of you.
•  Repeat with the other leg, and walk 20-30 steps.
5.  Side leg raise
•  Bend one leg slightly, while slowly lifting the other leg to the side, with your toes facing forward.
•  Hold for a second before lowering your foot to the floor.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times on each leg.
6.  Back leg raise
•  Stand up straight, and slowly lift one leg up behind you, with toes facing toward the floor.
•  Hold for a second, and then lower your foot to the floor.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times with each leg.
7.  Heel raise
•  Standing with feet shoulder-width apart, rise up onto your toes as high as you can.
•  Hold for a second, and slowly lower your heels to the ground.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times.
8.  Chair stand
•  Sit near the front of a chair with your back straight and your feet flat on the floor.
•  Put your arms out straight in front of you; then lean forward slowly, and stand up.
•  Sit back down.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times.
9.  Side step
•  Stand with your feet together and your knees slightly bent.
•  Step to the left, and bring your right foot to the left to join it.
•  Step to the right, and bring your left foot to the right to join it.
•  Repeat 10 to 15 times on each side.
10.  Balance with closed eyes
•  Use a chair, table, or wall next to you for support.
•  Close your eyes.
•  Lift one knee until your upper and lower leg are at a right angle, and hold for 10 seconds.
•  Repeat on the other side.
Hosted by Joy's Book Blog
We had snow on the ground on Sunday and rain on Monday.  I'm quite aware that I need cardio (strength and endurance) as well as flexibility and balance, so when the weather is good, I hope to spend more time walking outside. I prefer that to walking on a treadmill.  While typing this at 1:30 pm, the weather report says it's 61 degrees.  So I opened the window for my cat, who loves to sniff the fresh air.


Emily said...

These are excellent exercises!

Vicki said...

I have flexibility, balance, & cardio on my list for April. Good luck to us!