The sense of balance or equilibrioception is the perception of balance and spatial orientation. It helps prevent humans and nonhuman animals from falling over when standing or moving. Equilibrioception is the result of a number of sensory systems working together; the eyes (visual system), the inner ears (vestibular system), and the body's sense of where it is in space (proprioception) ideally need to be intact.
The vestibular system, the region of the inner ear where three semicircular canals converge, works with the visual system to keep objects in focus when the head is moving. This is called the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR). The balance system works with the visual and skeletal systems (the muscles and joints and their sensors) to maintain orientation or balance. Visual signals sent to the brain about the body's position in relation to its surroundings are processed by the brain and compared to information from the vestibular and skeletal systems.