The following article is excerpted from Healthy Aging Magazine.To continue reading this article and more like it, log in or subscribe to Healthy Aging Magazine, the lifestyle magazine that is all about following your passion and what you can do rather than what you cant.By Howard VanEsEvery second of every day, someone falls down and sustains a fall injury.It is not surprising, given that some 800,000 people have fall accidents every year, according to the CDC.

Sadly, a large majority of fall injuries result in negative outcomes, with many resulting in mortality.Therefore, taking care of your balance is critically important to maintaining your overall health, quality of life, and independence.So, how do we lose our balance?There are several reasons.The first is simply a matter of use it or lose it.As we age, muscles and proprioception (knowing where you are in space) tend to atrophy if we are not actively involved in activity that keeps us fit.Alignment issues are also a significant cause of balance problems, including rounded shoulders, scoliosis, kyphosis, twisted hips, knocked knees, pronation, etc.Other common contributing factors include using certain medications, high or low blood pressure, stress, and eye or ear problems.And on occasion, just bad luck! Our book Yoga for Better Balance provides a self-test that identifies exactly where and why your balance might be off and what to do about it.The good news is that it doesnt take much to improve your balance, and the time-tested practice of yoga offers the perfect answer for almost everyone!Why Yoga is Good for EveryoneWhether you are seventy years old and have been away from activity for a long time, a competitive athlete, or someone dealing with injuries, the practice of yoga can be performed and enjoyed by anybody.Of course, matching the right practice level to your specific needs is important.

There are yoga classes for seniors, the terminally inflexible, classes specializing in back care, athletically challenging classes, and a wide variety of styles and themes that match almost anyones interest.Yoga is also an exceptional modality for improving and maintaining balance as there is a whole group of postures called balance poses which are geared to working your balance.Not only do these postures help improve your balance, but they also help improve overall alignment, strength, flexibility, and focus.Many people who practice yoga regularly enjoy the additional benefits of sleeping better, an improved immune system, and an enhanced feeling of overall well-being.Below are a few easy but highly effective balance exercises to help you improve your balance: (Note: if you feel any strong discomfort or pain from any of these exercises, please avoid them and consult your healthcare practitioner.)Heel RaisesStand upright behind a chair, holding the back of the chair with both hands or stand by a wall for support.Position your feet under your hips with your toes pointing straight ahead.For the full exercise and more, read the full article in Healthy Aging Magazine:Healthy Aging Magazine | Beyond the Wobble: A Guide to Improving Your Balance with YogaHoward VanEs and Dr.Rick Harvey are the authors of Yoga for Better Balance: Improve Balance * Reduce the Risk of Falls * Feel More Confident in Your Body * Enhance Vitality & Wellbeing. This content is offered exclusively to Healthy Aging Magazine subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now Username: Password: Forgot Password '; } notesHtml+=''""; notesHtml+=''+note.description+""; total_user_notes++; }); jQuery("#dvListNotes").html(notesHtml); user_redirect_url=data.redirect_to; if (total_user_notes>0) {{ items: { src: jQuery('#test-modal'), type: 'inline' } }); jQuery.magnificPopup.instance.close = function () {; location.href = data.redirect_to; }; jQuery("#hdAlertWelcome").html("Welcome " + data.first_name + " " + data.last_name + ","); jQuery("#lnkRedirect_to").attr("href", data.redirect_to); } else { jQuery("#login_lbl_loader").html(''+data.msg+''); location.href = data.redirect_to; } } else { jQuery("#login_lbl_loader").html(data.msg); } }); return false; //to prevent form submission //or event.preventDefault(); }); }); Continue to your account Subscribe Today Healthy Aging Magazine offers in-depth feature articles, tips and information on how to achieve a healthy lifestyle. Enjoy features on diet and exercise, mental, social and financial wellness, active travel, and recipes! You will find ways to follow your passion, ideas for how to redefine yourself and stay active as well as profiles on inspirational people. Your subscription includes: Quarterly digital Healthy Aging Magazines. Free monthly digital newsletter. Special free offers throughout the year.

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