Do you wonder what those funny looking round half Frisbee-half ball things you may see at the gym are for?

Balancing.

Have you ever tripped and had a hard time keeping your balance? Do you play a sport like soccer or football and roll your ankle occasionally? Maybe you are getting older, and find it hard to maintain your balance. Regardless of the reason, working on keeping your balancing muscles strong is important no matter what your age or fitness level is.

Many people young and old, don’t want to work on balance training at the gym because they don’t want to look silly or uncoordinated, but balancing exercises are the some of the most important exercises you don’t want to skip.

While there are many different kinds of exercises that can help with balance, there is one tool that does the job of many exercises in one.

A balance board is a perfect way to increase balance and overall core strength.

Every move we make needs to be stabilized by our core muscles first. Core muscles help support your torso and back. Whether your kicking, throwing or walking, core muscles are helping you not fall over. Core muscles extend from your neck all the way to the middle of your thighs. Other stabilizing muscles are in your lower legs.

Training on a balance board strengthens those muscles that stabilize your core and lower legs by creating an “imbalance,” which causes your core to work extra hard to keep you upright. If you make it a habit to strengthen those muscles over time, you will be less prone to injuries if you slip, fall, or lose your balance. Additionally, some of the muscles in our legs can weaken over time, especially if we don’t use them very often. As people age, they may stop running or using the muscles surrounding the ankle making them weak and prone to other injuries.

If you are an athlete looking for ways to improve your game, strengthen the core muscles will put less strain on smaller muscles and may even help you gain that extra edge.

Start with short intervals of time on the balance board, and work up to staying on as long as you can. When you have mastered some of the basic moves, check out the professional balance board, which is more difficult.

If you’re still not convinced to try using the balancing boards at the gym, pick up your own for personal use at home.

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