Who remembers the 1972 olympics and Olga Korbut? In my Tullahoma, TN neighborhood, we held our own olympics, got parents to judge, and even handed out medals. Everyone was so taken with her that summer. We all wanted to be Olga Korbut and fly on the uneven bars or balance on the beam. Her balancing act was amazing!
Though not an olympic story by any means, here’s my tale of a balancing act. While visiting my children and grands this holiday season, one of my sons and I took the kids to the park for a little bit of play time. As we were walking, we heard a dog start barking and a huge bang. My son and I both turned to be sure the dog had not escaped his yard, and as we turned, I kept walking, but my grandson, who was riding his little training wheel bike stopped. Too late, I tripped over the wheel and I just could not stop myself and I fell onto the pavement. Luckily, I did not get hurt because as I fell, I rolled onto my side and sort of landed gently. I think I owe my lack of injury to my yoga practice, because even though I fell, I had enough balance to somewhat catch myself. Other than wounded pride, nothing was hurt. My son and oldest grand helped me up and we were on our way to the park, but it did give me pause and remind me, keep up the balancing act.
As we age, injury from falls is one of the most dangerous things we face. However, we are far less likely to fall if we practice balancing every day. Yoga is one of the very best practices to have, but barring that, you can work on balance by standing on one foot, then the other, for a short period of time each day. A good time to do this is while brushing your teeth. And who knows, maybe it will inspire you to give yoga a try. Or better yet, do they have balance beam category at the senior olympics?