Tag Archives: falls

Mel Collie | Would you like an easy way to improve your balance?

Mel Collie | Would you like an easy way to improve your balance?

Balance – when we grow up our balance starts to falter, we become less steady on our feet, less secure about crossing the road, unsure about walking down the stairs, heights scare us, worried when we are in a crowd – fear of being knocked over, missing the step up onto the bus, fear of breaking a bone that will take ages to heal…

Would you like an easy way to get your balance back?

I’ve seen, and tried, many ways to train balance, but many of them involve you standing on a wobbly surface.

Now , since I’ve been on the planet, the ground beneath my feet isnt wobbly, its perfectly sound ,no wobbles in sight, so I wouldn’t choose to put you on a wobbly surface to improve your already unsure balance system.

The thought of doing this can increase fear in the nervous system which means the brain will further tighten certain muscles and increase pain.

Thats not a great start…

The science bit

The inner ear – the vestibular system on the inner ear is responsible for your balance.

It works with your visual system, your eyes, it keeps objects in focus as your head moves. So it makes sense, don’t you think, to use exercises to help your balance improve by usng your eyes and your head movements, simple moves, easily followed. Much easier for you if your balance is already a bit shaky , as these easy moves can be done seated or even lying down, standing by a wall or chair.

The simple bit

Watch and follow along with me to test your balance and improve it.

Mel Collie





mel collie | inner ear balance
would you like to improve your balance easily and quickly


Mel Collie | An easy way to stop being clumsy

Mel Collie | An easy way to stop being clumsy

I used to be so clumsy, always had bruises on my legs from bumping into things it became so common that it was unusual if I didn’t have any bruises, so in a sense, I got used to it, does that ring a bell with you? You got used to something so much you didn’t think about changing it?

I discovered my clumsy antidote by accident on a course for corrective exercise using your brain rather than stretching muscles.

One of those tests that worked for me, I now do in my posture assessments, and it is for Spatial Awareness. What is spatial awareness and how does it affect your balance?


mel collie | spatial awareness
spatial awareness

A healthy spatial awareness allows us to understand our location, our surroundings, in relation to our bodies. This can be affected when we have a shock or an accident or trauma, affecting our ability to judge distances, for example, when we cross the road , we may not be sure how far away an approaching vehicle is, so we hesitate on the curb, not sure if we should cross or wait.

Poor spatial awareness can appear as being clumsy, bumping into things, standing too close to objects or people , than usual. You may also find it tricky to catch a ball, affecting sports, which may mean you’ve hated exercise since school because you have felt useless , less than able, find it tricky to differentiate from the words over, under, left and right.

Try this simple thing to help your spatial awareness improve: Grab a ball like a tennis ball, and throw and catch it with one hand, 5 times, then the other hand, 5 times, then from hand to hand, start low, increasing the height of the throw as you get more confident. Then throw it against a wall.  Try it with one hand, then with the other. Then move from side to side to side as you throw the ball at different parts of the wall, making it a little bit more challenging.


Try this a few times a week, but watch your breathing, try not to hold your breath as this can affect your results , in some people, in a very noticeable way, as inhibiting your oxygen tells your brain it is under threat, and all its interested in is keeping you alive, so reduced oxygen levels will slow you down and reduce your performance.

You can assess your nervous system response by doing a test before and after, like bending forward to touch the floor or a simple rotation movement, see how far you can go, and if your range increases or decreases after the tennis ball activity. ( if it has decreased, take a minute to relax and do some deep slow belly breathing , then retest your forward bend)

Make sense doesnt it, we just havent thought of it this way before.

Mel Collie





Mel Collie | How to have great posture as you age

Mel Collie | How to have great posture as you age

In my last post on the Red & Green reflexes,  you will have understood more about why pain and stiffness in the back, shoulders and neck and why its can be a simple thing like fear and our thoughts that can create pain and issues with our posture.

As we age, we can actually reduce the well known associated aging posture issues like back pain and reduced movement and balance.

The constant seesaw between the  Red and Green light reflexes, means that muscles are contracted and relaxed. As we get older we have more responsibilities , bills, relationship issues, worries, concerns, mortgages, work stress, deadlines, kids, sleep problems, diet issues, which can increase both reflexes.

All of these create a constant trigger of the 2 reflexes which eventually interfere with each other. When this repeats over the years, the senile posture is the result of all those years of pulling and relaxing, of fear and retreating, combining retractions of of withdrawal (Red light) and action(Green light) responses.

On top of this , we are told that as we age , pain is an inevitable sign of ageing, This is a sweeping statement, which can create a negative self image which is a judgmental point of view, and when we are judged, we tend to harbour a sense of fear and try to please others at our own cost.

This leads to a negative feeling, feeling  “less than”, so we feel small, our posture mirrors our feelings. This affects our fight or flight response, our breathing is affected, in turn this affects our posture.

The lower back muscles pull , the muscles in the front pull, the result is a forward head, rounded shoulders, rounded upper back. However, because we all see our own reality differently, our response are varied, so one person will not have the same posture as the next person.

Someone with a more stooped posture has their responses being more dominant in Red Light reflex . If the Green Light reflex is more dominant , we find the lower back curves are exaggerated , as is the neck too as they mirror each other.

We end up with the body being the outward projection of the habitual responses throughout our lifetime. responses to neuromuscular stress.

You can, though, reduce your stress responses, you can begin by noticing your triggers and you can change your body, how it moves, the pain you feel, and fatigue.

Accepting pain and lack of movement as we age is a myth, it can be inevitable of course, so lets embrace it, love it, allow it to fit , listen less to media and judgmental comments about what we “should” be doing and what we “should” look like as we age. These issues become the ingredients for our responses, they feed the red and green light reflexes so we feel more fearful which leads to us retreating more, concerned what others will think of us.

Happiness and fulfillment, gratitude for what we have, who we are and where we are, finding peace and calm goes towards a better inner being and strength, all of this can begin from a simple awareness of your breath, breathing from the lower abdominals,slow and steady inhalation and exhalation, connects with our sympathetic and para sympathetic nervous system, more about this in my next blog, so watch this space.

Mel Colie.  x