This is a very versatile and convenient form of training equipment that can be easily mastered. It can be used safely by most people and is extremely effective when performed with good technique. One of the great advantages of the gym ball is that it can be cheaply purchased used at home and therefore does not require any significant investment in equipment or gym membership. The gym ball also adds excellent variety to a training regime, especially when specifying the core.
A gym ball can provide a challenge to your balance, proprioception, coordination, strength, control and stability. Gym ball exercises and routines can be picked up from various internet sites and even Youtube but if you want to ensure that you are taking on the “right” exercises and maintaining good form then it is worth considering a visit to your local Physio. This is especially important if you have an existing pain, condition or have never taken on exercise before. A qualified physiotherapist can ascertain and personalize the ideal program to suit your body and condition. This is doubly important if you are wanting to train but currently suffer from pain.
Here is an example of a low back patient. A 45 year old male with a sedentary occupation and lifestyle has been suffering from back pain for many years and wishes to start exercise on this problem area. Now, his heart is certainly in the right place and he will be commended by his Physio for such a motivated approach but it is important to train right. For this patient it would mean avoiding at all costs a “no pain, no gain approach”. The patient must be given exercises that challenge him but allow him to maintain perfect form and keep him with a comfort zone. Muscle ache is OK but the patient’s original pain is to be avoided at all costs. If this golden rule is ignored, the pain could worsen over time and the good intentions will have come to nothing.
Drop by and speak with one of physiotherapists about gym ball training and how it may be useful for you.