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Can a Bracelet Help Your Balance?

Can wearing a special bracelet make your balance better? The simple answer is no. You may have seen an infomercial recently where they are in a mall and they stop people that are walking by to have them do a couple tests.

They do each test without wearing the bracelet, and then they do it again wearing the bracelet. In every instance (at least the ones they put in the commercial) the person does better athletically when they are wearing the bracelet.

One of the most common tests they do is for balance. They have the subject stand still, and the salesman pushes them on one side to see how much force they can take before they lose their balance. On the first try they lose their balance almost immediately.

Then they put on the special bracelet and try the test again. This time they have great balance and it is very hard to knock them off center. So it must be the bracelet right? No.

Most people will always do better at just about any test the second time because they now know how the test works. The first time the people were knocked off balance, they did not know how it was going to feel or what their body should do to counteract the push from the salesman.

After doing the test once, they know what it is going to feel like and they know that they just have to push harder the opposite direction to beat the test.

In fact, the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse tested that very idea. They had people do the same test that are on the commercial. They used 2 bracelets. One was the bracelet from the commercial, and one was an ordinary “placebo bracelet.”

Each person did each test twice, once wearing the special bracelet and once with the placebo bracelet. Some people wore the special bracelet on the first try, and some wore the bracelet on the second try.

The results? As expected, people always did better on the second try, regardless of which bracelet they were wearing.


Unfortunately, there is no quick fix for better balance, so if you see something that looks like it will fix your problems overnight, don’t bet on it. Your balance is a skill, and a skill can only be improved with regular practice. You need to be doing some form or exercise for your balance most days of the week. And it also helps to keep your legs, heart, and other muscles strong. Exercise can work wonders, but it doesn’t happen overnight.

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