Joseph Hubertus Pilates was a sickly child who began to study how to strengthen the human body through exercise in the early 20th century. He became an outstanding athlete over time and developed this method in a concentration camp in England, where he was admitted during the First World War as a German citizen.
Pilates is a system of physical and mental training that combines gymnastics, traumatology, and yoga. Its main principle is to unite muscular strength with mental control, breathing, and relaxation. Now practiced all over the world, the popularity of this training method is continually growing. The exercise ball is one of the most common accessories in Pilates.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 Key Facts
- 3 Our Selection: The Best Exercise Balls
- 4 Shopping Guide: Everything You Should Know About Exercise Balls
- 5 Buyer's Guide
- 6 Summary
- Exercise balls have uses in various fields, from sports to medicine and relaxation.
- The use of this accessory in different exercises provides physical, mental, and health benefits.
- You have to choose the ball size depending on your own body weight. This is one of the criteria that we will discuss in the final section of our article.
Our Selection: The Best Exercise Balls
Also known as yoga balls, these accessories are used in various activities. This is why you can find so many different models on the market. Their rise in popularity means that it can be difficult to pick the right model for your needs. In the following section, you will discover our very own selection of the best exercise balls currently available out there:
Shopping Guide: Everything You Should Know About Exercise Balls
It is essential that you learn more about exercise balls in order to choose the product that best suits your needs. This is why we have answered the most frequently asked questions about them in the section below. Buying the right model is fundamental if you want to make the most of your exercise ball and reap all its benefits.
What is an exercise ball exactly?
Swiss balls are particularly appreciated for the strengthening of the core and the back, and to improve coordination and balance. People generally use it to support their legs when lying on the floor or to rest the back or belly directly on it, thus training the flexibility of the spine.
What are the benefits of using an exercise ball?
- Physical therapy: They are ideal as therapy after surgery or an accident since they have no impact on the joints.
- Posture: Sitting on an exercise ball helps support your back while you work out by maintaining its natural curvature. This is very attractive for people with spine and back problems.
- Pregnancy: Pregnant women can use these fitness balls to do physical exercise while caring for their health and that of their future baby.
- Balance: The deep abdominal and back muscles protect the spine and support the body and its mobility. Training this musculature also develops stability and balance.
- Development: Finally, exercise balls are a great tool if you are looking to increase your muscle mass while working on your flexibility.
What types of exercise balls are there?
- Stability ball: This is the largest ball. You can use it for a wide variety of basic exercises, as well as full-body workouts. It helps strengthen your abdominal area, which is fundamental for advanced fitness.
- Medicine ball: This type of exercise ball is used for rehabilitation, physiotherapy, and strength training. It contains sand or other materials to increase its weight.
- Mini stability ball: Most often used for specific exercises such as push-ups, it contributes to developing muscle balance and toning the core. This small stability ball isn't designed for full-body workouts.
Who can use an exercise ball?
You can perform so many activities with a yoga ball that people practicing all kinds of sports can add it to their fitness routine for specific exercises. The numerous benefits that these accessories offer are the reason why they have become so popular in homes as well as professional environments.
How do I inflate my exercise ball?
- Remove the ball's valve cap.
- Insert the tip of the air pump into the valve.
- Start pumping until the exercise ball is fully inflated. Do not over-inflate it and never use an air compressor.
- Remove the tip of the pump and close the valve with its cap.
Do exercise balls require maintenance?
Store your exercise ball in a place away from heat or cold. Extreme temperatures are factors that will make it easier for your ball to be damaged and broken. You should, therefore, avoid humid places and direct exposure to the sun. Last but not least, it is strongly advised to deflate the exercise ball if you know you will not be using it for an extended period.
What are the best brands of exercise balls?
- ProBody Pilates: This manufacturer produces full-size and mini Swiss balls that have received fantastic ratings from buyers. Some of their models have become best-sellers.
- Trideer: This fitness company specializes in delivering the very best accessories for workout enthusiasts. Whether you're buying their exercise balls or other gym equipment they sell, you know you're getting the best quality.
Before you can purchase your own exercise ball, you should be very clear about the activities you want to perform with it. This will help you identify the size that is most convenient for you, also taking into account your height and weight. There are other factors that you should consider to be completely satisfied with your choice, and we have detailed them in the following section:
As we discussed earlier, exercise balls come in various sizes. Your choice will be determined by the type of exercise you want to perform and your own weight. If you want to do full-body workouts, the ball must be resistant enough to withstand your whole weight. Otherwise, it will probably break and expose you to various injuries.
Here are the different diameters of exercise balls available on the market: 35, 45, 55, 65, 75, and 85 centimeters. The most important thing is that you are as comfortable as possible while using it. To give you a rough idea of what you should opt for, remember that the 45-centimeter ball is best suited for people between 5 feet and 5 feet, 4 inches tall. Go for the 65-centimeter model if you measure up to 6 feet, and the 75-centimeter ball if you are up to 6 feet, 6 inches.
You can find exercise balls for all body weights on the market. This won't even be an issue if you are less 180 pounds; every product on sale can easily withstand that weight. If you weigh 220 pounds or more, on the other hand, you will have to search for an exercise ball that can hold anywhere between 1,000 and 2,000 pounds.
Your exercise ball must be resistant to blow-outs and offer excellent durability, both for your own physical integrity and for the economic aspect of the purchase. This is why you need to make sure that the product can easily withstand your body weight. Over time and regular use, exercise balls will naturally wear out, and you will be exposed to injuries if the model you have chosen isn't durable.
Exercise balls are made of elastomeric plastic material, which contains non-metallic compounds to give it a firm-yet-elastic consistency. The quality of these compounds marks the difference between the various models on the market. That being said, all of them meet the primary requirements, especially that of preventing a blow-out from turning into an explosion.
Besides analyzing its manufacturing materials, you can turn to user reviews and ratings to gauge the overall quality of the exercise ball you want to buy. You can learn more about their past experiences and get an idea of whether or not it is suitable for you. In addition, the warranty provided by the manufacturer is always an indicator of its durability.
If you are to use your exercise ball for health purposes, we cannot emphasize enough on the importance to check with your doctor or a specialist first. They are the only people capable of steering you in the right direction. Once you have received professional guidance, you can turn to exercise guides and YouTube videos that are compatible with what your physician has allowed you. Nowadays, the manufacturers often include a DVD with their products.
Exercise balls are extremely versatile accessories that you can use for medical or fitness purposes. Health goals should always be supervised by a doctor, physiotherapist, or any other professionals in the field. You can also turn to trainers and sports experts to reach your fitness goals, although the manufacturer may also provide guidance.
Whether you want to lose weight, tone your body, strengthen your core or improve your overall balance and flexibility, the exercise ball will help you achieve your goals. You will be able to practice a wide variety of activities with it – from yoga and general fitness, to specific exercises for the sport you play.
We hope that you found our shopping guide on exercise balls helpful and informative. If that's the case, feel free to leave us a comment in the section below with your favorite workouts! You can also share this article on your social media so that your friends and family can find the right product for them.
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