Putting it to the test

WEEBLES WOBBLE: Reporter Danny Bernstein struggled with some aspects of the Moving for Better Balance screening test despite maintaining an active lifestyle with lots of hiking and walking. Photo by Danny Bernstein

Taking the Moving for Better Balance screening test was a humbling experience. I’ve been taking yoga for years and have hiked for decades. Surely this test would be trivial for me. Diane Saccone administered the test, which you take wearing shoes.

  1.  Sit in a chair. Cross your arms across your chest. How many times can you go up and down in 30 seconds?
  2.  Stand and keep each pose for 10 seconds:
    •  Feet together.
    •  One foot halfway in front of the other.
    •  One foot in front of the other, heel to toe. This was surprisingly challenging.
    •  Stand on one foot – do this on both sides.
  3.  Measure a 10-foot distance on a carpeted floor. Time your speed as you rise from a sitting position in a chair, walk 10 feet and come back.

At my age, I was below average on the first test. On the second test, I was below average on the one-leg test for my left leg. Even though I stayed on one leg the whole time, I swayed and therefore wasn’t in control. My right leg is stronger.

Even with my exercise level, I’m at an increased risk of falling. Yikes!

— Danny Bernstein

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About Danny Bernstein
I'm a hiker, hiker leader for the Carolina Mountain Club and an outdoor writer. I've written two hiking guides "Hiking the Carolina Mountains" (2007) and "Hiking North Carolina's Blue Ridge Heritage" (2009) both published by Milestone Press. Check out my website www.hikertohiker.com

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