Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Finding a balance

…It’s sort of embarrassing, but HA cannot stand up straight and not fall over occasionally due to her dopey, boring, ¾-blind right eye.

..It’s kind of like a dry drunk…hmmm, that door looks pretty far over there across the parking lot, this should be interesting.

…The Harvard Medical School letter recently talked about balance. Boy, you don’t think about it until you don’t have it!

…The first part of balance, the story says, is visual. The eyes help adjust balance. Try seeing if you can stand on one leg for 30 seconds with your eyes closed. Welcome to HA’s world.

…The second system that can affect balance is called the vestibular—inner ear. Receptors in these canals gauge the position of the head and shoot off messages to tbe brain. Good, fine, doing OK, ooops.

…Proprioception refers to receptors of this name in the skin, joints, ligaments, tendons. and muscles (for example, the bottoms of the feet) indicating positioning of the body.

…The brain takes all this in—it’s the central processor. Also, your muscles need to be strong to react to these different messages.

…So, the answer is to exercise these systems. Nothing fancy. Stand on one leg for 30 seconds while brush your teeth or stand in line.

…Stand on an old foam pillow on the floor for 30 seconds, then switch legs.

…Do the pillow deal on tiptoe.

…Have someone toss you a Frisbee while you balance on one leg.

…Ask about wobble boards at the gym.

….Wobble boards—HA doesn’t like the sound of that. But she might try the tooth brushing thing.

…For now, shopping carts make a darn fine walker for in the store.

…Everyone says this will pass and that many fabulous ballerinas had one eye.

…Yeah, sure.

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