balance board exercises and why they are so awesome

I’ve been super impressed with the half swiss balls (BOSU balls) and balance boards you find in Canadian gyms. They really help rebuild flexible strength in lower body joints after injury, work the hell out of the core muscles and generally improve co-ordination and balance.

It’s really helped out my own personal snowboarding as it seems to give much more athletic strength as opposed to the dead weight which weighlifting can give you if not thought out properly.

One of the best exercies I’ve seen is with two people each standing on seperate balance boards and throwing a ball back and forth to each other while still keeping balance. This one really works the core muscles as well as co-ordination and is a lot more fun than just lifting weights up and down.

doing pressups with feet on one balance board and hands on another one is another great one, almost every muscle has to work overtime to stop the body from losing balance.

Any other ideas on good, useful, fun exercises?

 

I`ve had a Bongo Board for years…You can`t really do a whole lot on it but it is good for balance and keeping me loose

 
Avatar

What’s a Bongo Board

 
Just Giver - 16 June 2009 08:25 PM

What’s a Bongo Board

http://www.fitter1.com/Catalog/Items/BONGO.aspx

 

We used to make those Bongo Boards out of a 2 litre Coke bottle filled with water and an old skate board deck. So much fun to play around with and great for balance and coordination. Cheaper then buying one too! They are great for learning how to counter balance yourself so you can do butters and rails!

 

There is another great exercise that you can do on the BOSU that will help with your 180’s and 360’s. Standing on the round side of the BOSU, lower yourself into a squat position. Get as low as you can. Then leading with your head, shoulders and swinging your arms for momentum, jump up and twist 180 degrees so that you land back onto the BOSU facing the other direction. Land back into your deep squat letting your legs and knees absorb the impact. Do this about 15 times in one direction then change and jump in the other direction. This plyometric exercise is great for your balance, builds leg muscle strength, endurance and explosive power and will help to improve your frontside and backside rotations.

If you want any other good exercises just shout. I am a Personal Trainer and have a stack of great exercises that will help you to improve your riding.

Jules x

 
Avatar

Squats are a really good exercises you can do on the half swiss balls. Perhaps starting with basic squatting (with or without hand weights), and then progressing to the plyometic ones Jules metioned. Lunges is also good for leg strength. You can also do jumping lunges with the front leading leg on the ball, and then jumping into another lunge with the other leg leading.
Another good exercise for upper limb strength/core, and cardio is boxing while on the ball. Obviously, you will need a partner to pad for you.
You can also do abs- You can lie on your back and do normal cruches, or lye on your side and do side crunches. If you have a a partner to work with you can make it more interesting. If you each have a BOSU sit side by side, in a V with you legs up. If you have a medicine ball…great, otherwise, use any ball, and twist around to the opposite side of your partner and as you rotate the other way..throw the ball to them. You will be working your obliques.
Hope this helps!

 
Jules - 17 June 2009 07:07 AM

We used to make those Bongo Boards out of a 2 litre Coke bottle filled with water and an old skate board deck. So much fun to play around with and great for balance and coordination. Cheaper then buying one too! They are great for learning how to counter balance yourself so you can do butters and rails!

hahah..I did that too..The bottle was wrapped totally in duct tape and filled to the brim…..It was good for abOUT a month…It was hilarious when , on my 3rd 180 , the bottle burst…2 litres of water instantly on the rug…I couldn`t stop laughing

so my friend bought me the bongo

 

wow some great ideas. glad I started the post.

Jules your idea about doing squat jump 180s on the BOSU sounds great and definitely something I’ll try. Be really good to visualize while you are doing this I think, make sure your hands are doing what you want them to do as well as your legs. So could prewind before you hop and then slow down the spin as you land. I used to do a vaguely similar exercise standing on one leg the round side of the BOSU ball and then hop to the other leg hold for 3 seconds then hop back to the other leg and hold 3. I swear it works so much of your body and does wonders for stomping jumps. If you get the hang of it you can jump 180 as you change leg, the motion is closer to that of doing a changeup on a rail or box as your body has to lean over being on one leg. While Jules your idea sounds more like it would be similar to taking off of a kicker.

Becky the two BOSU balls with a partner sounds great for core work, you ever try it with the partners facing each other instead of side by side so as to work the muscles front to back instead of the side muscles?

Great to hear other peoples ideas, keep them coming. These kind of exercises make the gym a lot more fun than just pumping weights and I definitely believe give a more useful strength.

 
Avatar

Yeah, I have done that one a full swiss ball, but you can certainly do it on a half one as well. If you face each other, throw the ball on the upwards (the crunch) phase, and catch it on the downwards phase. The heavier the ball, the more your loading your core muscles. I also do them on the floor, but the advantage of doing them on the BOSU is 1. Friendlier on your back 2. You can perform the exercises through a greater range.
You can throw the ball from your chest to further work the muscles of your shoulder and chest, or throw it from behind your head (and keep your elbows tucked in by the side of your head) to further work your triceps, as well as your core smile

 
Avatar

Before reading this I was really enjoying just sitting around loafing after a day on the hill, ah well it was nice while it lasted….....

 
Avatar

with a whole body approach to fitness i have found the best results, like you said the swiss ball and core exercises are crucial.
Too bad you cant strengthen your knee ligaments before a massive stack at treble cone NZ :(

 
Avatar

doesn’t a balance board strengthen your knee ligaments? At the very least by building up the muscles around them

 

The goal of this exercise is to hone an individual’s skill in balancing snowboards, react quickly and to recover quickly from the imbalance through subtle physical adjustments.  Balance board task is really challenging even for the people who are physically fit until their bodies become good enough at making balance adjustments. For beginners, it is advisable to hold onto table of something stable for extra support until they get accustomed to the exercise.

 
Avatar

Or you could just sk8. Nothing beats getting outdoors and shredding it smile

 

hi can u buy balance boards?