Every injury has the potential to impair your proprioception capabilities and subsequently your balance. An unstable sensation may be felt if a ligament injury occurs, you may even feel that the joint could give way. The most common symptom of reduced proprioception is poor balance. Muscle compensation is also a sign of joint instability, this can also be a sign that there is loss of joint proprioception.
Proprioception is your body’s ability to sense its positions, movements, and actions. Receptors of the proprioceptive system respond to gravity and movement. We depend on this system to make sense of touch and motion experiences. This continuous loop allows our brain to respond to effort and force.
You can quickly improve both balance and proprioception with specific exercises. Studies have shown that balance exercises prevent injury and are an important component of rehabilitation following injury. The control needed to regulate movement plays a big part in improving your core. This is like an inner stabiliser that when used can develop posture, coordination and balance.
I often discuss the importance of the awareness of our bodies. Agility and strength come from the control of balance. By changing your bodies gravitational position and lessening the contact you have with the ground you are challenging your brain. You will move smoothly and improve biomechanics for many activities
No matter how young a patient is when they come into JM Sports Massage I am always thinking about the future. Balance is something many of us do not pay attention to until we are much older. There can be natural age-related changes to nerves, joints and muscles that decline proprioception and balance function. Prevention is better than cure, luckily studies have shown us that maintaining an active lifestyle can slow the age-related decline.
You may be thinking that none of this applies to you. Why not try this quick test I ask patients to participate in regularly?
Stand in a safe environment with your shoes off.
With your eyes open stand on your left leg, slowly bend your knee to a 45-degree angle, then raise your leg so that your knee reaches hip height.
Hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat on the other side.
If you found that easy, for the duration of the exercise close your eyes or look at the opposite wall or ceiling.
Still easy? Please click on this link to a balance routine that might be for you.
If you are really struggling with your balance and feel you may have other symptoms such as dizziness then please contact your GP.
If you have any questions please do be in touch.
JM Sports Massage