Friday, November 15, 2019

Improve BALANCE and ENDURANCE with Communication

How are you feeling?  OK?  Fine?  Good?    A little tired?  Wobbly?  And what ON EARTH do those mean?  (they’re called fuzzy words)

I work with many people – some of whom have mobility and balance challenges.  If a person says – I’m OK, maybe s/he is, or perhaps I’m reading something else in his/her form.  I use a simple Zero to Ten scale to help us both communicate endurance.

You know the pain scale, right?  Zero is no pain; Ten is put me out of my misery.  This is the OPPOSITE.

BALANCE:

  • Zero is the worst it can be (almost no one I meet is really a zero, cause they show up).
  • Ten is the absolute best (think gymnast doing a back flip on the balance beam.)

ENDURANCE

  • Zero means – Completely Empty Fuel Tank – if I don’t sit down, I’m going to fall down – I’ve got nothing left.
  • Ten is the tippy top of my endurance.  Let’s stop talkin’ and let’s keep walkin’

Another example:  We’re walking along and my client communicates a Five.  It’s probably time to turn around or rest – certainly not go farther.  Be proactive.  Rest before you absolutely need to.  Slow down vs. stopping.  (see endurance tips on this blog)

If you have a partner/friend/buddy – consider using this method of communicating.  It’s helpful for you, BUT it’s also extremely helpful for the person with mobility challenges.  S/he will start to be more aware of the need to rest or slow down or turn around.

All kinds of things drain or energize people.  Just when you think someone has gone from a 5 to a 3, they communicate a 6.  They’re having fun!

Remember that this is very subjective.  A person’s “number” is just the first number that leaps into their consciousness.  It can change and refine as s/he becomes more self aware and this simple tool helps people to become more self aware.  Many of us lose the mind-body connection as we age.  Some really smart/cerebral people never worked on it to start with.  This simple tool will help us be/stay tuned into how we feel/are. 

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