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This Month In Body
  • Get Off Your Bum
    If you’re like most people, the majority of your day is spent sitting down. What are the dangers of sitting too much and how can you move more? Read >>
  • Off-Balance Workout
    Since falls are the number one cause of fatal injury and the leading cause of injury hospital admissions for older folks, balance is your key to optimal health in the silver and golden years. Plan to incorporate a few of the following balance exercises into your workout routine. You can do them any time of day or make them part of your warm-up or cool-down. Read >>
  • Is It a Hamstring Injury?
    Unfortunately, injury to your hamstrings is quite common. Pulling, straining, or tearing one of your hamstrings causes sharp pain that puts you out of the game fast. Read >>
  • Pushing Yourself Too Far
    Before you decide to push your body to its limits every day for hours on end, you should know there are risks to over exercising. One such risk is rhabdo. Short for rhabdomyolysis, rhabdo can result from intense physical activity that causes the death of muscle tissue. Read >>
Health and Fitness News

Off-Balance Workout

Feeling off-balance? Improve your balance with these six simple exercises.

When you think of the benefits of exercise, you likely think of weight loss, improved heart health, or increased strength. One often-overlooked benefit of exercise is an improved sense of balance. When your core muscles (abs, hips, back, chest, and glutes) are weak, you’re more prone to lower-back injuries and falls. A strong core leads to increased mobility, better posture, and improved sports performance. With a strong core, you look and feel better, and normal everyday activities become easier.

For these reasons and more, balance exercises become increasingly important as you age. Since falls are the number one cause of fatal injury and the leading cause of injury hospital admissions for older folks, balance is your key to optimal health in the silver and golden years.

One way to improve balance and stability is by doing exercises that challenge your center of gravity. Plan to incorporate a few of the following balance exercises into your workout routine. You can do them any time of day or make them part of your warm-up or cool-down.

One-Legged Stand

Start off with a simple one-legged stand. With a chair or wall to grab hold of if you get wobbly, stand on one leg and bend the other so your knee is facing forward or out to the side. Stand with your eyes open and then close them. Keep your arms by your sides or raise them over your head. Try to stand on one leg for 30 seconds and then switch feet.

One-Legged Squat

Stand up and lift your left foot off the floor slightly in front of you. Now, push your hips back and bend your right knee as if lowering in a squat. Keep your chest up and arms extended in front of you. Slowly straighten your right knee to standing position and repeat.

Leg Swings

Stand on your right leg and raise your left leg slightly off the floor. Keeping your arms by your sides and your torso upright, swing your left leg forward and then backward several times. Now, swing your leg to the side while holding your opposite arm out to the side for balance. Switch legs.

Standing Crunch and Clap

Balance on one leg, lift your other knee to a 90-degree angle in front of you, and raise your hands above your head. From this point, lean forward and reach your hands under your lifted knee and clap. While keeping your knee bent, return your hands overhead, clap, and repeat. Switch legs.

Plank with Flying Arms

Step things up a notch with a plank. Get in plank position with your hands on the floor under your shoulders and your body in a straight line. In a semi-circular motion, lift one arm in front of you, out to your side, and then back to the ground. Now lift your other arm in front of you, out to the side, and back to the ground. Continue alternating arms. The closer your feet are to one another, the more challenging this exercise will be.

Liftoff

Improve your balance while strengthening your core muscles with the liftoff exercise. From a standing position, bend at your waist until your torso is parallel to the ground. Extend your arms toward the floor. Raise one leg out behind you while lifting both arms out to your sides. Hold for a second and then lower your leg and your arms. Repeat and switch legs.

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