People often use balance boards to develop their coordination and improve their posture. The unstable platform of a balance board challenges the body and intensifies the workout.
The human body is built to adapt, which means that after a certain period, your body will adjust in full to its current training program, rendering it not quite useless but a whole lot less effective. To keep getting results from any fitness training, you need to keep changing it up and increasing challenges.
Challenges can be increased by adding weight or removing stability. The introduction of the balance board to a fitness program can be a fun and effective way to challenge your adapting body and continue achieving progressive results. For more information regarding choosing the right product to incorporate into your training routine, our review of the best balance boards may come in handy.
So, You Think You Can Stand?
A balance board works by providing an unstable platform to work from. This instability means your body has to work harder to maintain stability by incorporating new muscle groups to achieve relatively simple tasks.
For example, over time, you get used to everyday activities such as standing and walking. The muscles of your core, back, glutes, and legs adapt to these activities, so much so that you barely even think about it anymore. Sometimes, due to lifestyle or injury, poor postural patterns and imbalances in weight distribution can form, leading to that niggly knee, wonky hip, or bad back that so many of us are familiar with.
By introducing an unstable base, your body has to wake up and consciously rethink about how it needs to stand to stay upright. The muscles of the glutes, core, lower back, and legs will reactivate correctly to work together in a more balanced and efficient movement pattern. Eventually, over prolonged use, your body will adopt these new healthy movement patterns at a subconscious level, meaning great posture and fewer aches and pains.
Benefits of a Balance Board
So, why do people use balance boards? Aside from being great fun and being almost guaranteed to make you giggle, a balance board is an incredibly effective way to retrain your body. The simple concept of a balance board makes it easy to integrate into your everyday life, meaning you can make improvements to your posture and stability even if you don’t have the time to commit to a regular fitness schedule. Let’s take a look at a few benefits of a balance board.
Stability is not just important for athletes, dancers, and circus performers. Good stability in everyday life significantly reduces the risk of falls and any long-term injuries. Balance board training can have substantial positive impacts on your stability, particularly your ankles. Ankles are a weak point for many. Fallen arches, previous injuries, and inherent weaknesses can all lead to ankle instability. By using a balance board to develop fine motor skills and coordination in the ankle joint, ankle movements, and reactions to any unstable ground can become more efficient, reducing the risk of falls.
Poor posture is the curse of modern living. Long periods spent sitting at a desk, long commute times to and from work, and evenings spent in front of the television all contribute to muscle imbalances and weaknesses that lead to poor posture. Aside from the visual downsides, the continued imbalance in muscles supporting the spine can contribute to structural problems. These issues can eventually lead to acute back injuries or chronic back pain.
The use of a balance board is an excellent and fun way to bring postural correction techniques into your daily life. The conscious effort that is required to stand upright on a balance board will keep bringing your posture to the forefront of your mind, making sure all the correct muscles are working together to achieve perfect posture.
Improved Brain Function
A balance board not only offers physical improvements. Regular use can also enhance brain function and concentration. These days we spend much of our time on autopilot with very little awareness of how our mind and body are working together to help us go about our day. The act of syncing our neural networks to maintain our balance requires intense levels of concentration. Similar to yoga, this can improve brain function, and encourage focus.
- Improving Balance and Stability With a Balance Board – LifeSpan Fitness
- Balance Training – WebMD
- The Benefits of Balance Training – Harvard Health