When it comes to must-have fitness tools, there are only a few that work your body better than an exercise ball.
What Is an Exercise Ball?
Exercise balls are inexpensive fitness tools that are nothing more than large rubber balls. But when combined with basic exercises, they help improve stability, balance, and endurance. They are also incredibly effective in helping to build lean muscle mass.
Exercise balls are also referred to as Stability balls, Swiss balls, or fitness balls.
Exercise balls are great for many types of workouts and you can even use one at your desk for active seating.
If you’ve been thinking about purchasing a ball, this article will help you pick the right ball and size for you.
Purchasing Exercise Ball
You can find an exercise ball at Walmart, Amazon, and Target to purchase. But regardless of where you buy yours, it’s essential you buy the best exercise ball.
When purchasing your exercise ball, it’s important to make your selection based on size, firmness, and durability.
Getting all these aspects right help you get a ball that’s perfectly fit for your needs and goals.
Not All Exercise Balls Are Created Equal
Whether you’re using an exercise ball for rehabs or balance and core strength training, you want to make sure you get a high-quality ball.
As with many fitness equipments, not all balls are created equal despite what their labels may indicate.
It’s your best interest to stick to a proven brand that meets the demands of your training program, but how do you really know which brand offers quality Swiss Balls and which one doesn’t?
Lucky for you, we, the Fitwirr team have been using and testing many exercise balls at our office to seek out the best quality exercise balls we can recommend to you.
Also, our fitness professionals have decades of experience using stability balls from different brands and they shared their favorites with us.
After all, choosing a reliable exercise ball that is durable, safe, and right fit is critical to establishing a proactive exercise routine.
Durability + Burst Resistance = Safety
One key quality we looked for in an exercise ball is durability, in another word, burst-resistance.
Balls with an anti-burst rating of 500kg or greater are the best, especially if you plan on using additional weight.
It the rating is not stated, it most likely falls between 100 ~ 200kg, which is very low.
Your stability ball must be able to withstand your body-weight plus any additional weight.
Another reason we look for anti-burst technology is for your safety.
If your exercise ball becomes punctured for any reason, anti-burst technology resists compression under load, particularly during exercise and allows it to slowly deflate.
Just imagine the danger of your ball bursting during exercise.
You will not only fall flat on the floor but face a major risk of injuries. We highly advise against taking the risk.
When you think of Swiss balls, think of car tires and how they wear off. Jus as most tires do, frequent and heavy use and less durable material cause Swiss balls to lose their burst resistance much faster.
If you plan to make a Swiss ball part of your daily exercise routine, be on the lookout for durability and burst resistance technology.
Best Burst-Resistance Technology
DuraBall Pro Plus and DuraBall Max have been tested to ensure product consistency.
For burst-resistance to a load of 500kg, they tested with static loads well in excess of 4,000kg. It does not guarantee (as with any other balls) puncture-free, but it is equipped with the most protection from explosive deflation.
DuraBall Swiss Balls are designed to take approximately 30 seconds to deflate if accidentally punctured.
It may still not be 100% puncture-proof, but their quality program has achieved exceptionally low numbers of faulty balls. Compare to a 10-15% return rate of some European and Asian balls, DuraBall has had a rate of less than 0.2%.
Three Exercise Balls from DuraBall
Duraball Pro Plus – Burst-resistance rating of 500kg. Smooth surface. Available in 55cm, 65cm, and 75cm.
Duraball Max -Burst resistance of 750kg (The strongest and safest Swiss Balls in the world). Non-slip surface. Available in 55cm and 65cm.
SensaBall – Improve your circulation and ease back tension with a Swiss Ball covered with sensory nodes. It’s a great alternative to back and body massage when rolling over the ball. The Sensable can also be used as a conventional chair or for stretching routines.
The smaller size makes a great footstool for tired and aching feet. Available in 55cm and 65cm.
Choosing the right size exercise ball for your height:
The balls are sized in centimeters, and at 10cm increments.
- 5’0” and under – 45 cm
- 5’1” – 5’7” – 55 cm
- 5’8” – 6’1″ – 65 cm
- 6’2” and over – 75 cm
While these are first measures of sizing up your exercise ball, another way to ensure the right fit is to test it out in person.
When sitting on the ball, your feet should be able to touch and plant flat on the floor. Your knees should form a 90-degree angle (your thighs parallel to the floor).