Balance is simply defined as an individual’s ability to maintain their center of gravity over their base of support. Lean over too far beyond your base of support, and you’ll be falling to the ground. Narrow your base of support too much and it doesn’t take too far to lean before you lose your balance. That’s one reason that so many falls happen in the mid stance phase of the gait cycle when you’re standing on only one foot and have a significantly reduced base of support.
As an athletic trainer, I see my fair share of broken bones, and anytime I can do anything to prevent them, I will. When I came across a recent study showing that as many as 70% of children in the US had inadequate levels of vitamin D (a necessary component to building strong bones), I knew I had to do something about it. After sifting through several research articles, I was reminded that vitamin D’s role extended far beyond bones as it may influence body weight, immune system function, and much more! With this vitamin playing so many important roles in the body, it’s comforting to know that although low vitamin D levels are common, they are also easily preventable with just a few easy adjustments to your routine or diet. Before we get into how to fix this problem, let’s talk about why it’s so imperative. (more…)