If balance is your ability to keep yourself upright using your senses, stability is your body’s fail-safe muscular system that helps you keep your head up when your balance starts to teeter-totter. So when you train for stability, you’re also improving your balance.
“When I lose balance, its my ability to fire my core muscles and stabilize my body that keeps me from falling or becoming injured,” Erin Gregory, Gold’s Gym national group exercise director, previously told Well+Good.
This requires strengthening your tiny foot and ankle muscles, as well as the core and large lower body muscles, to keep yourself grounded.
This week, Chloe de Winter of Go Chlo Pilates has put together a 10-minute standing workout specifically designed to improve stability, and help you stay confident and injury-free as you move about the world.
The series involves “lots of strengthening work through the lower body to help you move better, walk better, run better, jump better, dance better,” says de Winter. “Whatever you do in your life, it’s to help you do it better, with more control.”
In just 10 minutes, she packs in essential lower body movements like lunges and squats, but with stabilizer-challenging twists. For example, you’ll pair shoulder strokes (moving your arms like you’re swimming freestyle) with side step squats that add an extra balance challenge to the classic move.
You’ll also work those stabilizer muscles in your feet and ankles, which Gregory says are essential for stability.
“When you relevé, or lift to toes, during your workouts, you will improve muscle strength as well as balance,” says Gregory. “You will strengthen the muscles that provide stability and protect joints—essentially, injury prevention.”
To do this, de Winter closes out the workout with a series of calf raises and holds that she says “are going to strengthen through the muscles obviously in your calves, but also around your ankles and in your feet.”
Spend 10 minutes on stability today, and have a more stable future tomorrow.