You've probably seen some odd looking round boards or plastic disks laying around your gym and wondered "What the heck are those?" Those mini flying saucers are called "Wobble Boards" or "Balance Boards". At first I thought they looked like a kid's toy but they are one of the most effective and fun to use rehab and core strength building tools. Wobble boards are used by physical therapists, sports trainers and professional athletes all over the world. Skiers, skaters and surfers have used balance boards for years.
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Wobble Board Kit[/caption]
Because a wobble board (a flat board balanced on top of a ball or cylinder) makes you use muscles and strength to balance yourself there are many physical benefits.They are great for strengthening ankles and knees. In the process you increase your balance and core strength which helps prevent sports related injuries. It will also increase your endurance because its honestly a lot of fun to use.Wobble and balance boards are really effective when used to rehabilitate injuries to knees and joints which are the most common sports injuries.
As a general rule beginners should opt for a larger size wobble board
or get a balance board
that only moves in two directions. A wobble cushion
is an inflated disk that you stand on and since it doesn't move it's a much safer option for absolute beginners (those with very poor balance). A good alternative that provides various options are combination boards
that allow you to use different setup configurations. These provide for varying degrees of difficulty as you improve your balance skills.
You should always get someone to spot for you the first times you use the wobble board. Just because you are in good shape doesn't mean it won't take a while to master balancing skills.Be especially careful if you are rehabbing an injury and start out easy and under guidelines established by your rehab professional.
About the Author:
Bruce is the president of Return2Fitness, an online sports medical resource and product center. His "entrepreneurial spirit" has resulted in the founding or acquisition of 20 companies during his 39 year career. Bruce is not a medical professional so please consult your local specialist before making any changes in the treatment of any injury or condition.
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