Yoga can strengthen the key muscles that help with better balance and teach us how to keep a calm focus when we experience life’s challenges, according to Judi Bar, Yoga Program Manager at Cleveland Clinic.
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In the video, Ms. Bar demonstrates the following movements. These poses are all done while standing. Here they are explained for your reference.
Basic standing posture — Stand straight, feet hip-width apart. Point your feet forward, lift your chest, keep your shoulders back and dropped away from your ears. Gaze forward with the crown of your head lifted, with your neck and spine lengthened. Breathe gently and evenly.
Rocking horse — From the basic standing posture, gently bend your knees and rock forward onto your toes while swinging your arms out in front of you. Roll back onto heels while drawing arms back behind you. Repeat, rocking forwards and backwards on your heels.
Rocking horse with rollup to hold — On your next forward rocking motion, try rolling up to stand on tiptoe with your arms stretched overhead. It will help your balance to gaze at a focus point in the distance. Hold. Gently lower heels, rocking backwards again. Repeat rollup and hold on your next forward motion.
Grandfather clock — From your basic standing posture, widen your stance a bit. Shift your weight onto your right leg and begin to lean to the right, allowing the left leg to come off the floor. Let your body feel what it’s like to be off-center. Repeat motion to the other side. Bring your weight back to your right leg and bring your left foot up to your right calf or right thigh and try to balance. Release and repeat on the left side.
Tree — Return to your basic standing posture and find your focus point. Lift your right foot and place it on your left leg at the ankle, the lower leg, or the upper thigh (do not place foot at knee.) Keep your focus and engage your core. Breathe gently and evenly. For even more balance practice, raise your arms above your head. Try working up to a 30 second hold on each side. Don’t worry about perfection – practice is the key to learning better balance.