30 second stands:
This is the easiest to perform and one of the first things we recommend after an ankle sprain. Barefoot, stand on one leg for 30 seconds without wobbling/excessive movement of the foot/ankle. Then switch sides. Repeat 3 times. I recommend bending the opposite knee (like a stork) to make it easier. These are great while brushing your teeth!
- Close your eyes. (Might want to be near something so you can grab if needed, otherwise, obviously open your eyes). This is also how we test proprioception. Many people can perform with the eyes open but fall the minute they close the eyes.
- Hop foot. Stand on one leg. “Hop” to the other (Just put the other leg down in the same spot versus moving direction). “Stick the landing” for at least 3 seconds before switching to the other foot. 1 set of 10
- Best done barefoot but can be done with shoes on if you’re at the gym, foot issues, etc.
- Bounds Similar to hop foot except this time you are going to “jump” about 1-2 feet to the side to land on the foot.
Walk the line
Can get painter’s tape (recommended as it doesn’t pull up the floor/leave a mess). Practice walking the line. Next challenge, walk but don’t leave space between the heel and the toe when you step. Next challenge (easier if you are on a balance beam and have someone there to help) walk without looking down and no “overflow”/windmill arms.
When going up the stairs, pause with one foot on each step for about 2-3 seconds (aka, go slower than normal). Make sure you are alternating feet and hands out near the rail for safety.
Many yoga classes have balancing poses and some classes are specifically for balancing. Great pose for at home: tree pose.
At the gym
Add a wobble disc or bosu ball to your workout.
Exercise balls. Can you sit on it without falling? Try lying on your belly without moving.
**For more exercises on these, you may have to talk to a trainer, get online, etc**