In conjunction with the release of my new book, Women’s Home Workout Bible, I figured I’d take the opportunity to address some home workout issues here on my blog. One of the more common questions I’m asked is about purchasing a stability ball.
Without question, a stability ball (a.k.a. “physio ball” and “Swiss ball”) can be a valuable implement in a home gym, especially in the performance of exercises for the core. But stability balls come in varying sizes. How do you know how to choose a ball that fits your body? No prob. An easy test is to simply sit on the ball. Your thighs should be parallel to the ground. If your thighs slope down, the ball is too big; if your thighs slope up, the ball is too small.
Also, keep in mind that cheap isn’t necessarily preferable when it comes to stability balls. Sure, you can get stability balls for as low as around ten bucks or so, but these models tend to be made of thin, brittle material. This causes them them to lose air quickly, sometimes in as little as a few hours — and don’t underestimate what a pain in the rear it is to have to fill up your ball every time you want to use it. Cheap stability balls are also prone to bursting at inopportune times (like when you’re performing an intense set), and several serious injuries have been reported due to exploding stability balls. My advice is to spend a few extra bucks and get a stability ball that is rated to hold at least 600 pounds. It should run you no more than about $30, pump included. Ultimately, you’ll have peace of mind and a better quality workout.
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