Balance Exercises for Neuropathy
By Mary Ann Wilson, RN
Improving and strengthening balance is a strategic part of managing neuropathy. It is very important that you are safe when you work on balance exercises so you don’t fall. It may be necessary for you to have supervision or assistance from another person to prevent a fall. If your balance is good enough, you may stand by your kitchen sink, or behind a sturdy chair. Lightly touch the surface of the counter, back of the chair or wall but don’t lean on them. Begin each of the balance exercises below by getting yourself into good standing posture. To read more about how to achieve proper alignment, click here.
Balance Exercise #1 – March slowly in place, lifting only heels off the floor. When that becomes easy, slightly lift heels and toes off the floor as you march in place. As your balance improves, lift feet higher off the floor.
Balance Exercise #2 – Raise slowly up on your tip toes, then back on your heels. Knees are kept straight, but not locked.
Balance Exercise #3 – Step to the side with right foot, then bring left foot next to right foot. Step to the side with left foot, then bring right foot next to it. Repeat several times. As your balance improves, take larger steps to each side.
Balance Exercise #4 – Stand tall. Keeping your torso straight up and down, and feet flat on the floor, bend knees and hips slightly, sinking downward. Then straighten hips and knees and stand up straight. Repeat several times. As your balance and strength improve, bend knees a little more. (If you have knee pain, stop the exercise.)