10-second balance test may predict how long you’ll live

The ability to balance may be linked to a longer life.

A new study finds an inability to stand on one leg for 10-seconds late in life is linked to nearly double the risk of death from any cause. The study was published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Researchers say the simple balance test may be useful to include in routine physical exams for people in middle and old age. They say unlike aerobic fitness, flexibility and muscle strength, balance tends to be preserved until the sixth decade of life.

Exactly why a loss of balance can predict risk of death is not yet known.