A Question of Balance

In the late 1850s Frenchman Jean Francois Gravelot – you might know him better as The Great Blondin – stunned the world by cooking and eating an omelette (complete with stove and neatly set table) on a high wire stretched over Niagara Falls.

Actually Gravelot, who crossed the Falls on numerous occasions in a variety of ways – is something of a Johnny-come-lately in terms of funambulism (the art of tight rope walking) which has been around in China since the first century AD. Balance and agility are often underestimated part of the fitness matrix, yet they are pretty crucial to most sports.

It’s probably worth doing a bit of work on balance and agility then? There are literally hundreds of exercises using Bosu balls, wobble boards, exercise balls and the plain old gym floor (it’s hard to fall off that).

In the meantime, here’s a balance test you can try right now: stand on one leg, bend forward and touch the ground with the opposite arm, then do it with the other leg.

Easy huh. Now try it with your eyes closed.