One of the core ideas behind the concept of improving balance with stability exercises is that aging is not the only culprit when it comes to your deteriorating sense of balance. I believe that a big share of the blame lies in the fact that as we get older, we use our sense of balance less. This disuse then allows that sense to diminish the same way the strength of a muscle diminishes if you don’t use it.

This concept is actually good news. Why? If aging is the only reason your sense of balance is decaying, then there’s nothing you can do about it. But if disuse is also a primary cause, then that means you can do something about it.

An article from Biomechanics magazine recently reinforced my point, perhaps you’ll find it interesting and motivating. The article related that astronauts, after living in space on the space station for a while, display poor balance when they come back to Earth. Let’s think about this. You don’t see many astronauts over the age of 65. In fact, it’s probably safe to say that most of them are under 50. Yet, these relatively young men and women experience balance impairments after a few months in space. This means that their poor balance is not caused by old age.

Have you guessed what caused their poor balance yet? Disuse! There’s no gravity in space, so you can’t really fall since you’re floating around. This means that your brain doesn’t need to use it’s sense of balance. After spending several months without using their balance, these young astronauts return to Earth to find that their sense of balance is poor.

What they experience is really an accelerated version of the process that happens from the age of 60 to 80 as we move less and less, thus using our balance less and less. Your balance deteriorates much more slowly and over a longer period of time, but the result is the same.

So there you have it. Poor balance is at least partly caused by not using that sense. Naturally, the solution to the problem is to use your balance more by doing balance exercises. That or you can move to outer space.

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