Balance Exercises to Improve Your Strength

Len Kaplan began having difficulty walking in a straight line when he was in his 50s. Scoliosis combined with compressed discs in his back were causing his balance to deteriorate.

“Physical therapy, regular exercises, just wasn’t getting the job done. I needed something different,” Len, now 80, said.

Around that time Len and his wife, Ginny, took a cruise with twice-daily Tai Chi classes. Ginny, 77, said they loved Tai Chi — which consists of slow, controlled movements and deep breathing — so much they found a class in nearby Yorba Linda, Calif., when they returned home. The habit stuck.

Len and Ginny have now been taking Tai Chi and balance classes regularly for more than 15 years. Len is able to easily walk in a straight line and his balance has improved. Last September while visiting Greece, Len and Ginny decided to hike the nearly 100 steps to the top of the Acropolis. Up they went, over slippery, uneven steps with no hand rails. They made it to the top and were rewarded…

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This article was written by Hilary Achauer and originally published on www.nytimes.com