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3210 Using balance boards to strengthen lower limb muscles

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Hello. Your podiatrist has examined you and has found that some of the muscles in your lower leg or foot are weak. We think that this weakness may be contributing to your foot, ankle or lower limb pain or discomfort. If your general balance is good, your podiatrist may recommend that you get a balance, or wobble, board. This is a round bottomed board on which you can do exercises. It helps to strengthen your muscles and improve your balance and proprioception. Proprioception is when your brain understands how and where your body is moving in space. This is important as it reduces the risk of you falling or spraining your ankle. This video will show you some exercises to help strengthen your lower leg muscles using a balance board. You can purchase a balance board from your podiatry department or online. You should only use a balance board if recommended by your podiatrist. Do not use a balance board if you have very poor balance or have suffered from falls. Always keep your feet shoulder width apart when you are standing on the board. The board works best on a carpet or a secure rug or mat. Make sure the area is clear so that you don’t hurt yourself. The following exercises gradually increase in difficulty. Start with the simple exercises and then progress as you feel able. Sit on a chair and place the balance board under your feet, keeping your feet shoulder width apart. Slowly rotate the board a few times in both directions. This helps to improve your control and the range of movement in your ankles. Carefully stand on the wobble board. You may need to hold onto a chair for support to begin with. Gently rock backwards and forwards, and then side to side. Do this for 2 to 3 minutes. Now try rotating the wobble board so that the edge of the board is in contact with the floor at all times. Do this for 2 to 3 minutes. As your progress, try to rotate the board, but this time, don’t let the edge touch the ground. Next, stand still on the board and do not let the edge touch the ground at all. Aim to hold this for 2 minutes. Whilst standing on the board, bend your knees slightly and then stand up straight. Repeat this 10 times. It will be hard at first to maintain your balance. As you improve, try to bend your knees more and more, until you are in a squatting position. You can now try reaching your arms out in front of you and rotating your upper body from side to side. Position the wobble board so that you are facing a wall. Throw a ball against the wall and catch it on its return. You could also try this with a partner. Before moving onto the more difficult exercises, we recommend that you try all of the exercises you have done so far with your eyes closed. This will improve your sense of space, but do take care when closing your eyes as your balance will be affected. If you have mastered everything so far, you can now attempt to do the same exercises whilst standing on one leg. Remember to repeat each exercise on the other leg as well. Rock the board from front to back for one minute, and then from side to side for another minute. Try to rotate the board in a circular motion in one direction for one minute, and then in the other direction for another minute. Stand still on the board and see how long you can stand on one foot for. Next, bend your knee slightly and then stand up straight. Repeat this last move ten times. As you improve, try to bend your knee further. Still on one foot, put your arms out in front of you and rotate your upper body from side to side. Finally, try throwing a ball against the wall or to your partner, while standing on one leg. It may take you some time to be able to progress through these exercises, but keep practicing and you will notice a big difference in your balance and strength. If you find any of the exercises painful, you should stop, and if you have any questions, please speak to your podiatrist.

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 32 seconds
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Views: 0
Posted by: richardwh on Mar 8, 2017

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