In the fitness world, the word “balance” gets thrown around a lot. We know how important balance is to living a happy and healthy life. We often take the stable ground we walk on and gravity for granted.
We learn balance at a young age, and it becomes part of who we are and how we function. But to understand the full complexity of how we achieve balance is simply amazing. One of the wonders of our human body is a system you don’t hear about too much, so I’m going to share it with you:
It’s called the Vestibular system.
The vestibular system is a crucial part of our balance in life. It is our sense to spatial orientation with respect to gravity. The vestibular system works alongside the cochlea, which is part of our auditory system. This is the labyrinth of the inner ear, which consists of lateral, anterior, and posterior semicircular ducts.
There are two components in the vestibular system: the semicircular canal system, which relates to rotational movements; and the otoliths, which relate to linear accelerations. Basically, the vestibular system sends signals to the neural configuration that control eye movements, and to the muscles that keep us upright.
All hail the Vestibular System, for it is the system in the body managing balance, posture, and the body’s orientation in space. This awesome system regulates locomotion and other movements. It also helps keep objects in visual focus as the body moves! Wow!