How the Balance Board can Improve your Life

No Need to Fear Falling Anymore

As physical therapists, there are many fun tools and gadgets that we get to use to better help our patients.

One of these is the balance board!

Now I know there are people who shake at the word “balance” because the fear of falling is a real concern. However, the important thing to remember is that balance is a skill that will improve with practice. I want to give you a little bit of insight into what a balance board is and how it is used in physical therapy to help our patients improve their skills and have confidence in themselves.

What is a balance board?

A balance board is a solid platform that uses force plate technology to accurately assess balance and provide training methods for patients. The force plate measures the amount of postural sway a person has throughout the different tests and training protocols. It can measure each component of balance individually including proprioception, vestibular, and vision through various tests. The computer system is then able to place the patient in a percentile based on their age and gender and categorize them into a fall risk category.

How is the balance board used in physical therapy?

First, a physical therapist will use the balance board to assess your overall balance. They will test each of the 3 components of balance and will compare your scores to normative data. This will give the physical therapist information on how best to help you improve your balance.

Once you have completed your balance assessment, the balance board can be used to help improve your balance.  There are different training protocols that a physical therapist can work with you on. One of my favorites is “target practice” where I have my patients complete weight shifts either forwards and backwards or side-to-side as they try to hit their target on the computer screen. It is a fun way to practice this very important skill.  Not only do we use the different training methods provided with the balance board, but complete many other different balance activities to help you build confidence.

Finally, we use the balance board to re-test your balance. It is our goal in physical therapy to help you climb in your balance percentile for your age and gender and also help decrease your fall risk. By retesting on the balance board, you will be able to see how all of your hard work paid off!

As you can see, the balance board is a fun tool that we use in physical therapy to help our patients. Apex offers free 30-minute balance screens (mention this blog article when you call) using the balance board and one-on-one time with a physical therapist to go over your results.

Don’t let the fear of falling hold you back in life.

Ready to start therapy? 

If you’re ready to start therapy to get your life back, contact us today and book your first session.

Written by:

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Certified Athletic Trainer

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