The Gym Ball, also known as a Swiss Ball, has played an important part in fitness workouts since the 1960’s. Since the concept was imported to America in the 1980’s, exercise balls have quickly become an essential addition to home and commercial gyms across the country.
If you haven’t already experienced the benefits of a swiss ball workout, this product article takes a look at some exercise options, as well as some of the reasons why they have proved to be so popular.
Benefits of training with a gym ball
[one_half]If you’re planning a new fitness program which includes home workouts, it’s often difficult to find the budget or space to store the larger machines and equipment.
That’s why one of the most popular and effective training tools, used by people at all levels of physical fitness, is the gym ball.
Although you will need enough room to lie on the ball in a similar position as you would a workout bench, this still helps to preserve your floor space.
The cost is also significantly lower than any weights bench you might find, with this particular gym ball currently available for less than £10.
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Despite its simple design, the support and versatility makes it an effective way of performing over 40 different exercises.
If you wanted to really make the most of the gym ball, we would also recommend taking a look at a good quality set of dumbbells, such as the Fitness-Mad Neoprene coated set.
5 key benefits to training with a gym ball:
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Gym Ball / Exercise Ball – Features Summary
Gym ball workouts and exercises
If you haven’t put together your own swiss ball workout before, don’t worry. There are dozens of workouts that you can find on our very own Pinterest board.
These have been hand picked to suit all levels of personal fitness, and include workouts with dumbbells and without, just in case you want to increase the intensity.
Finding the right size gym ball for your body type
Before making any buying decision, it’s important to make sure that this is the correct ball for your height and body type.
As a general rule, the height of a swiss ball should be enough to keep your upper thighs parallel to the ground when seated on top.
Even though your choice of shoe (always recommend wearing gym shoes when using a ball for improved grip), may not make much of a difference, it’s important to take it into account when measuring what height gym ball you need.
Workout in safety
[one_half]Once you’re all setup for a new resistance training program, there are a couple of important points worth mentioning, particularly when it comes to safety.
If you’re used to pressing a particular weight of dumbbell using a weights bench, you might not be able to perform the same reps and sets on the gym ball.
Despite having several major benefits over your standard weights bench, stability isn’t designed to be one of them.[/one_half]
It’s the effort you put into keeping your body stable that helps to keep your muscles activated, including your abs, obliques, hamstrings, lower back, and chest.
It’s also important to consider clothing and footwear. Wearing the same shoes that you use for running or current gym workouts should provide enough grip to help you keep your balance, while a simple gym top or t-shirt will allow you to move your upper body around freely on top of the ball.
After you finish your workout, storing the ball in a place that isn’t too hot or cold is recommended, to prevent any expansion of the air inside the ball, which could eventually lead to weakening of the material.