This weekend’s exercise addresses the coordination between your arms, legs, and brain and it’s done while seated. So it’s excellent for preventing falls, and it also strengthens your lower legs and arms.

And today you’ll discover that coordination is important for more reasons than just preventing falls – it also reduces the chances of injury if you do fall, a fact that’s been scientifically proven. In addition, a just-published study shows a remarkable connection between strong legs and cognitive function.

So let’s get started with this multi-functional exercise!

Why:

As you surely know, coordination is a key component in fighting osteoporosis without drugs. That’s because coordination helps prevent falls that could result in fracture – and preventing fractures is the ultimate goal.

But exciting new research reveals even more benefits of coordination: it can actually help prevent injury in case a fall does happen.

Coordination Exercises Decrease Likelihood Of Injury In The Event Of A Fall

Researchers studied 17 trials that involved over 4,300 participants. They discerned four types of falls as they reviewed the data: severely injurious, injurious, falls requiring medical care, and falls that resulted in fractures. The resulting meta-analysis was published in the BMJ, with scientists concluding that:

“Exercise programmes designed to prevent falls in older adults also seem to prevent injuries caused by falls, including the most severe ones. Such programmes also reduce the rate of falls leading to medical care.”1

This is great news! Isn’t it fantastic to know that when you engage in exercises like the Weekend Challenges, you’re taking part in actively preventing falls, injuries, and fractures?

There are even more remarkable benefits to coordination exercises, which we’ll discuss in a moment. But first, I want to show you how to perform The Seated Coordination Improver.

How:

You’ll need a couple of small dumbbells for this exercise, or you can use soup cans, water bottles, or any other similar object that weighs about a pound. And of course, you’ll need a chair.

  1. Sit up straight with both feet flat on the floor.
  2. Rock your feet back and forth by picking up your alternate heel and toe (you’ll lift your right toes along with your left heel, and vice versa).
  3. As you’re rocking your feet, hold your arms out to your sides while holding the weights (one in each hand).
  4. Make small circles with your arms in a forward direction. After about 10 circles, switch directions and make 10 circles in a backward direction.
  5. Continue rocking your feet throughout and repeat at least 5 times.

As you perform this exercise, you’ll see how coordination is required – you need to engage your brain to keep your feet in rhythm while circling your arms. This helps explain how coordination exercises enhance cognitive abilities as we age, a connection that’s been scientifically proven.

U.K. Twin Study Shows Lower Leg Strength Predicts Cognitive Ability

Studies on identical twins provide unique insights. Three-hundred and twenty-four sets of identical twins, ranging in age from 43 to 73, were studied for a period of 12 years. Scientists assessed the connection between muscle fitness and brain function, and found that:

“a striking protective relationship was found between muscle fitness (leg power) and both 10-year cognitive change…and subsequent total grey matter…”2

In other words, the twin who had more leg muscle power had fewer age-related cognitive changes over a period of 10 years.

In conclusion:

“Leg power predicts both cognitive ageing and global brain structure… Interventions targeted to improve leg power in the long term may help reach a universal goal of healthy cognitive ageing.”2

It’s fascinating that lower leg strength – an area of the body whose location is far from the brain – is a key area that, when exercised, influences the brain. But as prior studies have shown, when muscles are exercised, they release hormones that promote nerve cell growth in other places in the body.

Many Exercises In Densercise™ Target Leg Strength And Coordination

The moves in the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System are specifically designed to target fracture-prone areas such as wrists, hips, and ankles. So exercises that strengthen lower leg bones and ankles also offer protection against injury, as discussed in the first study on coordination, and the cognitive benefits described in the second study.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

Moves like the One Step Jump (page 33), the Wall Walk (page 49), and the Hopscotch Jump (page 26) work the lower legs to build bone density, increase muscle strength, and all of the benefits described above (and so much more).

Enjoy the weekend!

References:

1 El-Khoury, Fabienne, PhD candidate in epidemiology, et al. “The effect of fall prevention exercise programmes on fall induced injuries in community dwelling older adults: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.” BMJ. October 2013. 347:f6234. Web. http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f6234

2 Steves, C.J., et al. “Kicking Back Cognitive Ageing: Leg Power Predicts Cognitive Ageing after Ten Years in Older Female Twins.” Gerontology. February 2016. Vol. 62, No. 2. DOI: 10.1159/000441029. Web. http://www.karger.com/Article/FullText/441029

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  1. Patsy Moore

    I like this exercise. I found it easy to keep the feet going while turning the arms in a particular direction but quite hard when changing the arm direction. Interesting!

  2. Mallo

    I think keeping active and continuing to do the things you’ve always done preserves those little grey cells! Wholesale Snapback Hats I shall be trying this coordination exercise, it looks like fun!

  3. shula

    Thanks for this creative exercise.

  4. Evelyn Oden

    Can anybody help me? I take omega q plus,from Dr. Stephen SANATRI, is Ubiquinol the same thing? Thanks

  5. Evelyn Zundel

    Thanks for the exercise. I am currently taking TrueOsteo BoneSupplement. Do you still recommend this?

  6. Sheila Hayes

    Hello Vivian,

    Thank you for your articles and advice on managing Osteoporosis. I am 84 years old and was diagnosed in England 3 years ago. I now live in Australia .

    My main query is the amount of supplements per day. ? Am I correct in thinking you are advising 18 tablets or have I mis-read your book.

    Best wishes,

    Sheila.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi Sheila,

      There is no need to take as many as 18 supplement tablets on the Program. 🙂 There are 12 Foundation Supplements recommended for building bone on the Program, but it’s recommended that you obtain as many of these as possible from foods and supplement with a multivitamin. Personally, I take a multivitamin and an algae-based calcium supplement, along with extra Vitamin C (500 mg) and ubiquinol (50 mg) every day, because it’s practically impossible to find a quality multi with everything. 🙂

      • Ateka

        Dear Vivian
        I fell five months ago and dislocated and fractured my ankle at three places Had to undergo 4 hour surgery. They have inserted 15 pins and 2 plates.I am still having difficulty in walking as my ankle gets swollen and painful after moving for under an hour.
        Please can you advise me on specific excercise and supplements.I am 58years old
        Many thanks

  7. Rhona

    Hi, Vivian,
    Great exercise – thank you!
    Have just purchased your programme and being vegan I am delighted that lots of the food you recommend are my everyday foods. I’m just wondering if there would be a vegan alternative for whey powder.
    Many thanks
    Rhona (UK)

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You are welcome, Rhona! And I’m glad to hear that the Program works so well with your existing vegan diet.

      If you choose not to consume whey, you could take 100 to 200 mg of Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA) instead of whey protein. 🙂

  8. Jacqui

    Thank you Vivian.
    I submitted my last note before I had finished.

  9. Jacqui

    This exercise looks very useful for people who are sedentary.
    A friend of mine has been prescribed Bisphosphonate. Is it a safe drug to have? What would be the natural food to have?

  10. annabelle

    Good one! Thank you Vivian.

  11. Carolyn

    This is a fun exercise and helps with concentration too. I just had my arms going and then added the feet which worked. Interesting to hear about leg strength. They checked mine when I had surgery 6 months ago, and told me I was very strong. I did not know why they wanted to know. Your article gives me hope!

  12. Linda Stadtlander

    Hi Viviane,

    I have been using the program for approximately a year and taking the Algae Cal Plus Calcium and Strontium Boost. I have been through three bouts of BC since 1998 and am grateful to be here, however, I have developed osteoporosis as a side effect of all the estrogen blocking chemo drugs and treatments. I must admit, I don’t remember my first order of the Algae Cal, but for some reason I ended up with both products. Now I see the article where you are opposed to the Strontium supplement. I am confused; please explain. I took both products for about 8 months, but stopped the Strontium when researching. I have also sent my consultant, Elizabeth, an EM twice asking about this in the past couple of weeks, but no response. She may not be working there anymore, so I am trying to contact you this way.
    NOTE: Between the Algae Cal, exercises, and nutrition I am feeling much stronger and confident. I am very grateful for you and your programs help.
    Linda Stadtlander

  13. Marlene Villar

    Good morning Vivian,
    I seems easy, but when I tried it this morning I find it
    very challenging. At first, I had difficulty coordinating
    my arms, legs and toes. So, I was doing it slowly,
    until I was able to coordinate the movement of my arms,
    legs and toes together. I will continue to practice this
    exercise and include it into my daily routine.
    Vivian, thank you very much for sharing this valuable
    exercise. Have a wonderful day. Marlene

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Yes, Marlene, keep trying and you’ll get it… Think about what this can do to improve your coordination and prevent falls (and injuries)!

  14. Evelyn

    I WILL DEFINITELY TRY THIS EXERCISE, IT LOOKS INTERESTING, THANKS VIVIAN.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You’re welcome!

  15. Teresa ochoa

    Jesus! I am definitely, going to try this exercise for coordination. I am a left handed artist, and I have the tendency, to confuse, left and right . At the gymn, I struggle with exercises directions. Hope this help. Thanks Vivian.

  16. Diane

    Hello Lynne, did you check your iBooks!

  17. carla riffel

    am I the only one who finds this impossible, at least on the first few tries?!! I’m laughing, but I think my brain is badly in need of these types of exercises!

    • Diane

      No, Carla, you are not the only one, this exercise is good for a chuckle anyway.

      • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

        This exercise can be challenging… but that’s the whole point 🙂 Don’t give up!

  18. joy markman

    I am most impressed with your auntie of 96 – I cannot believe she does all those things! – I wonder what her secret is to her longevity! G-d bless her!

    • Alison Graham

      I think that one of the reasons is that she is an amazing cook and always cooks fresh ingredients that she buys locally. Because she has never learned to drive, she has always walked everywhere and carried her shopping home. She also looks after everyone, is a wonderful hostess who makes everyone feel welcome. She always perches on the arm of a chair rather than settling down, so she is ready to jump up to do the next thing that needs doing. She is an inspiration!

  19. Crete

    Amazing! Will start coordination exercises right away! Sure need them!
    Thanks Vivian! God bless you.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Good to hear, Crete! I’m glad today’s post inspired you. 🙂

  20. Alison Graham

    I certainly agree that leg power is related to brain power! I have an Auntie who is 96 looks after her own Home and a 70 year old daughter with cerebral palsy and does all her own shopping and cooking . She knits, sews and does crafts, walks everywhere and is incredibly fit for her age. I think keeping active and continuing to do the things you’ve always done preserves those little grey cells! I shall be trying this coordination exercise, it looks like fun!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      How inspiring, Alison!

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