You can spend all day lifting weights and working out in the gym, yet lack grace, balance, and agility. By using the best balance board, you can increase your awareness of your body and improve your balance and coordination. The benefits are for young and old, for injury recovery, for older people trying to regain stability or elite athletes trying to get an edge in training.
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Otherwise, known as wobble boards, balance boards are lots of fun, but hard to master. Here are our best balance boards for beginners, seniors, and advanced athletes:
- StrongTek Professional Wooden Balance Board.
- INDO BOARD Original Training.
- Yes4All Wobble Balance Board.
- URBNFit Balance Board.
- EveryMile Wobble Balance Board.
How Does a Balance Board Work?
A balance board works by activating your muscle’s synergy, or the way they talk to each other to keep you in balance. Since the balance board is unstable, it forces you to adjust your center of gravity constantly to stay upright
Staying unstable also aims to increase your proprioception, also known as kinaesthesia. This is the awareness of your body, knowing where it is in space and relative to other body parts. The best athletes and dancers have amazing proprioception.
Why Are Balance Boards Great for Beginners?
If you aim to improve in any sport, an increase of balance and grace can help you reach your goals.
Balance boards are great for beginners because there’s such a variety of workouts available. If you’re unstable and need serious help, you could begin by sitting in a chair and balancing the wobble board under your feet.
This will start to activate your leg muscles. As you grow more confident, the board can be used with support—a wall, ballet bar, or even the back of a chair.
As you progress, you can find even more challenging exercises, and also add in weights and resistance exercises. The best balance boards for beginners have handholds, areas that you can hold onto while performing push-ups or other arm balancing exercises.
Why Balance Boards Are Great for Older Adults
You’re more likely to fall when you get older and because of this, we’re more likely to be injured in a fall. Balance is always important, but seniors, in particular, can benefit from having done some balance training.
Participants in one study managed to increase their balancing abilities by over 200 percent, even while balancing with their eyes closed. The best balance board for seniors will be sturdy and might have a textured surface to aid in slippage.
When you use a balance board, you’re activating certain areas of the cerebellum, the lowermost lobe of the brain. It’s the small extra blob at the top of the brain stem. That tiny little mass of tissue controls your movement, both planned and reactionary.
Using the best wobble board exercises, you activate this area of the brain. As you continue to train, the brain’s systems grow stronger and allow you to find more grace and stability in everyday life.
Footwear can be important for these exercises. Check out our guide on the best shoes to improve balance with reviews for men and women.
Who Shouldn’t Use a Balance Board?
There aren’t many restrictions on balance boards since they’re so easily adaptable to any level. If you’re using a good balance board and you have never balanced before, you’ll probably find it hard at first. Don’t let that stop you! Start with small, safe movements and gradually increase your activities. Use a mat to prevent injuries or use a supporting wall or chair while you balance.
Best Balance Boards Reviewed
StrongTek Professional Wooden Balance Board
Made of gorgeous finished wood, the StrongTek does more than just look good. This board is built to be sturdy, as it’s able to hold 350 pounds.
The StrongTek balance board has a single directional rocker, so you can only balance forward and back. However, this makes it the best balance board for seniors who are looking to regain balance they had lost due to the horrible aging process.
- Aesthetically pleasing.
- Unique wooden finish.
- Specialized anti-skid pads.
- Single directional rocker is the best balance board for beginners and seniors.
- More advanced users may find no challenge in the single directional model.
- Smaller sized unit.
Akaw, dude! The Indo is reminiscent of a surfboard, sporting a flat, oval shape. This model is the only one on our list with detached balance points. It comes with an inflatable ball cushion and tube-shaped foam roller to create balance varieties.
This seems like a pricey option until you look into what’s an offer. There are 3 balance units in the package, a roller, a standard wooden wobble board and the flagship product, the inflatable ball.
This is a great idea as you can vary the stability of the “ball” depending on how much you blow it up. This means you can start off with it almost flat to accommodate the least secure person. 3 breaths and the ball becomes a real challenge.
On the standard board, the textured surface is roughed up by sandblasting. This means that the sand from the textured surface can become dislodged as you use the board, resulting in bits being dislodged on the floor.
The roller is a good addition. Not for me as I don’t think I’ve ever been good at sports that required good balance but for surfer types, it’s another dimension to train on.
- 3 balance items with a board, separate ball and cushion roller.
- Fourteen color options.
- Instructional DVD.
- Anti-skid ‘cleats’ at the ends of the board to prevent slippage.
- Wide range of activity options.
- Cool designs can be pretty but wears after use.
- Gripping sand on board surface can loosen with use.
- Need to manually blow up the cushion ball.
Yes4All has so many wonderful features, from its anti-skid surface to its heavy-duty plastic wobble bottom. But what makes this model one of the best balance boards is the side handles which makes it easier to get your ‘balance board legs’. Big enough to grip, but not enough to take away from the surface area you need to stand, these handles are plush.
- Anti-skid surface.
- Attach resistance bands for more versatility.
- Variety of colors and textures, including wood and plastic.
- No skid prevention on the base of model.
Able to hold over 550 pounds, the UrbnFit balance board is by far the strongest on this list. There are two models available, wood and plastic. The wooden construction is perfect because it prevents scratching on floors.
The URBNFit balance board has a relatively small ball strongly fixed to the base which gives the board up to a 30 degree tilt. Not something a complete beginner should jump on with two feet but it comes with a balance guide, to give you exercises to get started both in writing and digitally.
- Wooden construction prevents scratching floors.
- Balance Guide packet and PDF download.
- Very strong.
- Substantial tilt from the horizontal.
- Plastic balance balls can be too slippery for tile or wood floors.
- Diameter can be too small for massive feet.
The Everymile board is a proper wobble board. Not using the ball attached beneath but rather the half oval shape. This gives a smaller tilt (15 degrees) which may be a more suitable choice for balance board beginners.
Since the ball is wide, rather than tall, it makes it easier to stabilize. This is goodt news for seniors and people who are using the wobble board for physical therapy.
There are excellent handles for push up exercises, and the texturized base gives you extra stability. The ball is also texturized to keep you solidly on the floor. The board is made of plastic and is lightweight at 3.5 lbs so easy to carry around.
- Handles allow you to perform more exercises than other models.
- Wide ball makes it the wobble board a good option for seniors.
- Small tilt.
- Made of plastic.
- Supports 300 lbs.
It may seem easy, but it’s not! You’ll have so much fun relearning how to balance. You might be training for a sport, recovering from injury, or looking to increase your stability in midlife to stave off the effects of aging.
A good balance board for beginners will be solid construction and non-skid and for seniors, make sure the base has a textured surface, so your feet stay stable.
For all these boards and for BOSU balls as well, if you’re new to balance exercises starting off carefully is necessary. We’ve chosen the best balance board for beginners as the StrongTek Professional Wooden Balance Board.
Training with a balance board can be useful for many physical health reasons and for lots of activities. Apart from the mentioned advantages for maintaining and improving balance for older adults, using a balance board can improve awareness of your body and tone your muscles especially the core, back and leg muscles, whatever age.