I love exercise equipment that can be used in multiple ways. Single-use items are unnecessary in a home gym, and if you’re like me, you probably need to save on space.
An exercise ball is a great way to add lots of core exercises into your routine, and can also be a great addition to the office.
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Here are the best exercise balls:
- Live Infinitely Exercise Ball – Editor’s Choice
- URBNFit Exercise Ball
- DYNAPRO Exercise Ball
- ProBody Pilates Exercise Ball
- MANTRA SPORTS Exercise Ball
Using Stability Balls
Though it may seem simple, just a large inflated ball, a good exercise ball is useful for so many activities. Some are great additions to any workout, while others are more specific for seated maneuvers.
The other major benefit of using exercise balls is improved balance and coordination. The balls are part of a family of exercise tools along with the balance board and the BOSU ball which all play a part in stability and mobility issues.
Exercise balls otherwise called Fitness, Fit or Swiss balls come in different sizes to cater to human size so as a rough guide for someone
5′ and 5’7” = 55 cm ball
5’8 and 6’1” = 65 cm ball
Over 6’2” = 75 cm ball
The tension of the ball is a factor too. For those used to using the fitness ball or a balance ninja, the tension will be high so inflated fully. Whereas people with less good balance should keep the ball slightly deflated.
All of these models are “anti-burst” which just means they won’t explode but if there is a problem the ball will deflate in a controlled manner. And the weight pressure which they can withstand is at least 600lb, number 5 in our list with the best ball, our number one choice having a limit of 2200lb.
Best Exercise Ball with Reviews
There are numerous exercise balls on the market, let’s find out which one is the best. If balance is important check out our guide and reviews of the best shoes for better balance.
This ball has some of the best features, which is why it’s my top choice. The anti-burst PVC plastic is able to withstand small cuts to the surface, so if you accidentally roll over a thumbtack at work, the ball may be ok.
The Live Infinitely ball also comes with excellent accessories for keeping your ball in tip-top shape. It includes an air pump (which is usually standard) but also extra air plugs and a remover tool so that you can adjust the degree of inflation easily.
It also has a base available, which can be used to create a more stable unit for beginners or simply to stay in place. A 10 percent discount can be applied if you purchase both together.
- High weight capacity.
- Textured surface.
- Multiple air plugs and accessories.
- Base available.
- Softer models can be difficult to balance for beginners.
- More oblong in shape than a true sphere.
A gym-grade fitness ball made from eco-friendly PVC, the UrbnFit is great for stretching and working out. It features an instructional pamphlet, actual and a downloadable version, so you have references for some serious core busting exercises.
If you’re taller, or bigger, there are many sizes available to fit your needs. Like all the best exercise ball options, it comes with extra air plugs. It may feel a bit insecure to use as a desk chair or a birthing ball since the material is rather thin.
Currently only having two sizes to choose from means a limit to their recommended use for those under 6’1″ or so.
- Included workout pamphlet.
- Eco-friendly PVC.
- Available in many colors.
- Sizes can measure smaller than advertised.
- Thinner material.
You can feel good using the Dynapro because of its eco-friendly construction. Using extra-thick material, the Dynapro can support over 2,200 pounds, allowing you to perform major bouncing exercises without fear of popping.
The matte surface can help you stay steady, as it’s idealized for skin contact. It won’t slip out from under you when doing pushups or situps because of the texturing and the anti-skid ridges.
- Excellent hand pump.
- Specialized matte anti-skid surface.
- Size charts can be misleading for desk chairs; please go one size up.
BPA free is a common feature of the best exercise balls, and the ProBody is no exception. Its material is slightly sticky so that you won’t be sliding all over the ball.
Though the ball is advertised for Pilates, this can make it difficult to effectively follow a Pilates workout and may be more suitable for yoga or dynamic exercises that need you to stay stable on the ball.
Customers have reported that this ball holds air extremely well when inflated properly. While some users have had difficulty, the manufacturers suggest you need to remove the plug from the ball ( “Of course you do!” I thought) to fully insert the pump.
Be careful when purchasing, as you can order a ball with or without a pump.
- Excellent air retention.
- Textured surface is excellent for stability.
- Advertised sizes are smaller than reality.
Mantra Sports know that you’re a busy bee and don’t have time to fight with your exercise equipment. This is one of the best exercise ball options because it provides excellent instructional videos about setup and exercises.
This unit comes with a ring to stabilize the ball into a chair. The ring also has resistance bands that can attach so that you can double your workout options. With a glossy wall poster included, you can create your own home gym with tons of possibilities.
- Stability ring.
- Adjustable resistance bands.
- Set up videos to help you get started.
- Base is inflatable but not particularly stable.
- Pump is a bit inefficient.
Why Should I Use Stability Balls?
Ah, the core—our most contentious muscles. As a trainer, the first thing that people want to work on is their midsections—losing fat and gaining toned muscles.
Stomach fat seems to be the biggest concern for most people new to fitness or not.
A stability ball can help you whittle that waist by activating your core muscles. Instability training can give you higher muscle reaction times, improve your balance, and strengthen your muscles.
Don’t forget the cardio and eating well for overall weight management though.
Lower back issues can also be eased by using the best exercise balls. Your midsection isn’t just your front, you know. Those core muscles are also in your back.
When you use a stability ball, it forces you to constantly adjust your center of gravity.
Using proper posture will increase your ability to balance, which in turn will help you continue to activate your core muscles.
Many exercises can be assisted with an exercise ball. Have a seat on the stability ball while you do arm workouts to add extra ‘oomph’ to the exercise.
You can increase the effectiveness of your situps and pushups by using unstable surfaces. Many floor exercises can be made more difficult with fitness balls.
Expectant mothers can also use stability balls to keep their abdominal muscles strong during pregnancy. Gentle rolling exercises can also relieve tension in the pelvis later in gestation.
Balance balls have also been shown to decrease pain in childbirth by helping to stretch and loosen tight muscles.
If you’re stuck in an office or at a desk all day, you may fall victim to the dreaded ‘Office Gut.’ When you lead a sedentary lifestyle, it may seem difficult to get back to physical fitness.
Fitness balls are convenient and portable for use at home or at your place of work being easily deflated and re-inflated if required.
If you’re beginning a fitness journey, an easy way to start is with an instability chair. Many of the best fitness balls can be paired with a chair ‘frame’ which holds the ball. You’ll be activating your core muscles as you work.
The best part is that once you’re steady on the chair frame, you can start using the ball on its own, increasing the difficulty. I like to do slow rotations and rock back and forth on the ball, which really helps to loosen up my back.
Using a stability ball can be easy or hard. If you’re using it with a seat frame or ring, it can be an easy way to activate your muscles during an otherwise sedentary time.
You can also pump up the volume by adding an exercise ball to your workout routine. Whichever way you choose to use it, the best fitness ball will have a robust construction and a high anti-burst weight.
Choose one with ridging to prevent slipping.
I love the Live Infinitely Exercise Ball because it features all of these, but also because of the discounts available when you buy their products in a bundle.
A stability ball can easily go from home to work to the gym and back again, keeping you focused on fitness.