Having appropriate quickness and agility is incredibly important when trying to reduce the risks of falls happening in seniors and individuals that aren’t steady on their feet. Unfortunately, this is often neglected, since most seniors think they simply need to “balance better.” Balance exercise, of course, is important in staying steady. But what if you start to fall? You need to move your body quickly to be able to catch yourself from actually falling to begin with. The rest of the article, in addition to the video above will detail a few exercises you can do to improve your agility and balance.
Before You Begin
The exercises demonstrated above will be using an agility hurdle throughout the video. If you would like to purchase a hurdle for yourself, feel free to purchase one with our Amazon associate link, below. Otherwise, you can just use a couple of towels, books, or anything else to step over for the class. In addition to this, it is important to note, that all of these exercises require you to move as quickly as possible. We also do use a weight in the video as well. If you have hand weights, that is great, otherwise a gallon jug of water, or heavy object will do fine. Make sure when you are doing this, to be careful, and only go as quickly as you comfortably would like to go. If you get confused on the description, feel free to consult the video above.
Hurdle Agility Drills
Side to Side Steps
Start with the hurdle on the side of your body on the ground. Next, alternate stepping over the hurdle back and forth. Make sure to keep your hips pointing straight ahead, not opening your body at any point.
Forward and Back Steps
Start with the hurdle in front of you. Step over the hurdle with one foot, and then let the other foot follow behind. Then, step backwards over the hurdle, and back to your starting place. Make sure to alternate which leg you lead with.
Side Step and Shuffle
For this one, start with the hurdle to the side of your body again. Next, you will step over the hurdle to the side, walk all the way around the hurdle, and then step over the side again, doing this multiple times. Make sure to alternate which leg you lead with.
Farmers Carry March
Grab a heavy dumbbell or weight, and hold it to your side. Line up all of the hurdles you have in front of you, spaced out about 1-2 feet apart. Next, with the dumbbell on one side, march over the hurdles as quickly as possible. Make sure to repeat which leg you lead with AND which side the dumbbell is on your arm.
Forward Step and Shuffle
For this one, have all of hurdles still lined up in the same position as the previous exercise. Next, you will step over one hurdle. Shuffle to the side, around the next hurdle. And then step over the one after that. Do this multiple times, and make sure to lead with different legs to make sure you are getting equal work.
These are a few of many great agility exercises that you can do with hurdles. Make sure to do them frequently to improve your overall steadiness on your feet and stop falling today! If you are interested in checking out our full fall prevention guide, used to help many of the seniors we have worked with improve their balance, you can see it here.
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