Challenging Our Health

I’m finding that Physical Therapy is one of the most significant advancements in medicine, at least for me. When I had a knee injury in college, the doctors told me to rest and stay off my leg for a month. Today, they’d want me to ice it for a few days, start doing some stretching and see a PT to start working out in 4 days.

Recently I’ve had a little bout with some dizziness and balance issues. After ruling out anything serious, my physician recommended vestibular physical therapy to help strengthen that important balance system in my inner ear.

The PT put me through a series of tests to determine my issue and gave me a set of exercises designed to challenge my ability to keep my balance and overcome the dizziness. She told me I should expect to get dizzy as they involve rapid head turning, looking up and down and side to side while walking, along with standing on two pillows to challenge myself by balancing myself with my eyes closed (try it yourself, it isn’t so easy!)

The idea, of course, is to push my inner balance system to work beyond what it normally does in my everyday life. By doing so, I will strengthen my vestibular “muscles” and develop new neural pathways to replace whichever ones were not working.

This exercise routine is the perfect example of resilience.

In this case, by purposely creating a challenging situation that requires me to sharpen some stability, my inner ear will reach a new point of restoration that will help me stay evenly on my feet during my regular life.

Resilience is all about overcoming adversity. In most cases, the difficulty is unwanted or unexpected, but in some situations, we can create a challenge to help us develop new skills.

What kind of resilient challenges can you take to strengthen your muscles, whether in your body or your mind?

© Richard Citrin 2022

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