Astronauts prepare to leave the International Space Station.
NASA via AP
When you’re an astronaut landing on the Moon, you can’t rely on the same gravitational cues we have on Earth. But regimented training with sensory devices could one day prevent spatial disorientation.
People learn balance as they grow – and can usually improve their balance with practice.
uzhursky/iStock via Getty Images
Balancing well is a whole-body experience that develops over time and takes practice to master.
About 1 in 4 adults ages 65 and up experience a fall every year.
sasirin pamai/iStock via Getty Images Plus
Lifestyle factors like physical activity, diet and sleep can lower the ‘biological age’ of your cells and tissues and reduce age-related physical decline.
These boots were made for superhuman balance.
Candler Hobbs, Georgia Institute of Techology
If you want to use an exoskeleton to improve balance, a study finds that superhuman reflexes can help you stay upright.
Sleep plays a critically important role in the recovery process in the days following a concussion.
nicolamargaret/E+ via Getty Images
While high-profile concussions in the NFL have brought renewed attention to the gravity of head injuries, they can also occur on the playground or during junior varsity practices – with lasting effects.
Dogs use their tails to communicate.
Eastimages/Moment via Getty Images
An anthropologist explains some of the many ways animals use their tails, from balancing as they walk to attracting a mate.
Motion sickness affects people of all ages.
There’s still a lot we don’t know about motion sickness – but the balance system seems to play a big role.
Standing on one leg regularly is good for you.
Practising standing on one leg has also sorts of benefits, research shows
When we lie down, our brains rely more on touch and pressure to figure out our surroundings.
Learning that our brains process information differently when we’re standing up or lying down has implications for how we study and assess brain function.
Ashley Landis/AAP Image
Gymnasts need to carefully calibrate their leg muscles to gain optimum spring from the floor, springboard or beam. And their arms are crucial for balance and creating the right amount of rotation.
Blame your ears, your eyes and your brain. But mainly your ears!
Eccentric exercises (such as walking downhill) cause our muscles to lengthen under the load in order to slow the body down.
‘Eccentric exercises’ are a normal part of everyday life – but they may carry some risks.
Looking out the window instead might stop you feeling sick, but that doesn’t work for everyone.
When you read in the back seat of the car, your eyes tell your brain you’re still. But your ears can sense you’re moving. Your eyes and ears are having an argument that your brain is trying to settle.
Claudio Divizia via Shutterstock
The public broadcaster tries to cater to all views, but sometimes that’s a dangerous strategy.
New research reveals how flamingos can stand – and even sleep – on one leg for so long.
How do they do while sleeping what we can barely do at all?
Carlos Bustamante Restrepo
These birds spend long periods, often asleep, standing on one leg. Is it passive biomechanics or active nervous system control of their muscles that allows them to do easily what’s impossible for us?
We don’t tend to realise it, but there are complex processes happening in our body at all times just to keep us upright.
The fact we are almost totally unaware of this elegant reflex is evidence of the superb, undercover work the balance system does for us.
Easy to remember how to do, hard to figure out how it’s working.
What does it take to keep a bicycle upright and moving, without crashing?
Our expert explains how our bodies’ many complex systems deteriorate, leading to an increased risk of falling.
Falling over and balance problems may be early warnings for Alzheimer’s disease, according to US university researchers…