Good balance. It’s something we take for granted until we begin to experience unsteadiness, or worse, a debilitating fall or sports injury. We rely on our sense of balance for everyday movements such as walking, standing, sitting, and driving -- making balance a major player in our quality of life. Without it, even the simplest of tasks can become difficult or even impossible to accomplish.

But did you know that in less than a minute you can have your balance accurately and objectively measured? Because we believe good balance is critical to your good health, we offer this no-appointment-needed evaluation at no charge.

“Balance isn’t balance until you close your eyes. Most people believe they have great balance because they do yoga or play tennis. The truth is you can have fabulous balance in yoga class but still suffer a fall when light conditions are poor or when it is dark,” says Dr. Felch.

The cutting edge technology that makes this lightning-quick evaluation possible is called Computer Aided Posture Stability testing, or CAPS for short. Foothill Chiropractic has one of the first and only machines of its kind in the South Bay.

The CAPS system combines a sensitive force platform with a sophisticated software program. Together they measure the often undetectable movements a person makes while standing. Abnormal postural movements can be detected in just 20 seconds, instantly providing quantitative feedback and analyzing the likelihood of suffering a fall. Balance is categorized according to normative data and the subject’s balance is then classified as mild, moderate, severe, or profoundly reduced.

“I would encourage people to go and take the test. What a great tool. It's completely objective,” says Foothill Chiropractic client Shella Bordi, 68, who lives near Portola State Park. “I was surprised to see how out of balance I was and to have such immediate, concrete evidence.”

A benchmark balance score and report is immediately generated, allowing Dr. Felch to determine if a balance problem is present. For moderate, severe or profoundly reduced balance, it is recommended that the client undergo a full evaluation to determine the source of their balance problem. If the test shows only mild impairment, it is recommended that they drop by and have their balance evaluated every 1-2 months to monitor for deterioration. Deteriorating balance is often an early warning sign of underlying health problems.

Another Foothill Chiropractic client, Rudolph Bomarc, 77, of San Mateo, sums it up this way, “I would recommend anyone and everyone get this balance thing squared away. Even younger people can have problems with balance and it’s one of the most important things in the repertoire of aging; if you don't have your balance, you have a fear of falling, and that's just no good. On a scale of 1 to 10, I started at a 2 and over time, my balance has improved to a 7. ”

Is balance testing only for those over a certain age? “Absolutely not,” says Dr. Felch. “Everyone can benefit from better balance. I am repeatedly amazed by the number of young athletes I see who have terrible balance. After only a few treatments, most people report feeling more confident in themselves and their ability to move, feel more powerful in their sports, and elderly patients especially report feeling less afraid to do the things they love to do. Balance is not something you can practice and become better at. It is either working for you or it is working against you. ”

Click here to download a PDF with more information.

© 2014 Foothill Chiropractic and Wellness Center