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Balance Board

57

Stand on the board and hold down the buttons until you are balanced, try to keep your balance without holding on.

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The timer starts when you let go of the button and stops when the board tips over to one side. There are two problems: keeping the board horizontal and keeping your centre of gravity over the middle of the board.

Media

Surf's Up

If you’re having trouble balancing on this exhibit, imagine you are on a surfboard. We need to think about two things: having a strong support base and keeping our centre of gravity low. Your support base is the area between your feet. The wider this base, the easier it is to balance. This is why we feel much more stable on two legs than if you’re standing on one. If you keep your centre of gravity nice and low over your support base, you’ll find it much easier to stay balanced.

'Ear 'Ear

Your ears play a very important role when it comes to helping you balance. Inside your inner ear are three small loops known as the semi-circular canals. These are filled with fluid and have lots of tiny hairs; when we move, the liquid inside these canals moves as well. This movement causes the tiny hairs to send messages to your brain about the position of your head. Your brain can then respond by sending messages to the muscles in your body that can help you to stay balanced.

Why do we feel dizzy on rollercoasters?

After being on a rollercoaster, you might feel a bit dizzy, that’s because the fluid inside your ears is still sloshing around. All that moving fluid causes the brain to receive mixed messages; it gets confused about the position of your head. Once the fluid stops moving, the brain receives the right message and you stop feeling so giddy.

Tightrope Walkers: How do they do it?

It can be tricky balancing on a surfboard or a skateboard but imagine if you had to balance on a rope high off the ground.

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Look Closer

Welcome to Look Closer, Techniquest's brand new digital tool. We're trialling Look Closer as a way of offering you a closer look at the science demonstrated by many of our exhibits. You'll find visitor sheets, videos, articles on contemporary science as well as fun trails to navigate your way around the exhibition space.

Speak to our Science Communicators to find out more.