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Physioballs (also known as Swiss balls, fitballs, or exercise balls) are popular therapeutic tools that provide a wide array of exercises to be performed. The sizes vary from 45 to 85 centimeters, in order to be suitable for people of all heights. They are incredibly useful in physical therapy, exercise, athletic and weight training, yoga and other physical activities. Since they have a variable air pressure controlled using a valve, they can conform to all common preferences.
Being cheap, durable, effective and extremely easy to handle after a short accommodation period, physioballs are smart choices that can benefit anyone. After all, amateurs and professionals alike are delighted with the results they can see.
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The manufacturer includes a convenient hand pump which is easy to use, unlike some others we tested. This is not only convenient but makes this a good fitball for traveling purposes as well.
One thing we did notice that was slightly annoying was that during the first inflation, we weren’t able to inflate the ball to its full size. You could tell it was smaller than it was supposed to be. To remedy this, we added air gradually every day, and only after day three were we content with the size and height of the ball. Additionally, right after removing the product from its box it does have a plasticky odor. The smell dissipates after a day or two, so no big deal there.
In summary, although the inflation aspect is a slight inconvenience, we were very impressed with the quality of the product and are pleased with the purchase. If you want the best, look no further.
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We also liked that the ball is characterized by an anti-slip feature. Hence, it will stay in place for the entire time of your workout. We also noticed that the fitness tool was really easy to clean. We just used a damp piece of cloth. You can also choose from three distinct sizes, namely 55, 65, and 75 cm in diameter. We found the pump foot also quite handy.
Moving on to the next aspect... the quality price ratio. We would like to say that this is a purchase that provides good value for the money paid. It costs less than $11, being a tool that targets the most important muscle groups in your body, not to mention that the product is extremely durable. 3,000 pounds is a lot, which gives you peace of mind that the ball will support you in spite of the resistance of your workout.
Nonetheless, we weren’t so happy with the unpleasant plastic odor, which was strident the minute after we unboxed the package. It wears off in time, but not right away. Inflating the ball can also be a headache, as it takes a lot of time. It doesn't help that the manufacturer didn’t include a set of complete instructions. And although we had no quality issues in our testing, it does appear some Amazon customers have had problems with the ball deflating or even popping.
Considering all these aspects, the product is a decent purchase. It does have some shortcomings, but the quality the quality seems good considering it is about half of other fitness balls.
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The manufacturer used sturdy materials and indicated that the ball is meant to support 2,000lbs when the product is inflated at maximum capacity. When looking at customer reviews, we noticed that some people had issues with the ball bursting. We put the product under a LOT of stress (multiple heavy people) and never had this problem. We suspect the reason the ball didn’t hold up in those cases was that it wasn’t inflated to its maximum capacity.
The texture of the ball is more slippery than some others. We didn’t encounter any trouble with slipping ourselves, but since the surface of the ball isn’t textured and slip-free, if one isn’t careful, they may slip.
Another unpleasant feature was the plastic odor, which remains for several days after using the product for the first time.
All in all, there appears to be mixed opinions regarding the reliability of the product, but we had no such problems. And fortunately, the manufacturer offers a money back guarantee in the case that the product does fail.
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The purpose of a physioball is to let a person exercise while practicing their skill of maintaining stability. As you would expect, the result is that more muscles are involved than when doing a similar physical activity on a hard surface. Most often than not, this leads to increased strength in the core muscles and an improved ability to keep balance.
The biggest advantage of a physioball is that it involves more muscle groups per exercise naturally, achieving more than you could in the same amount of time on stable surfaces.
Physioballs are also used instead of office chairs at times. They are believed to encourage proper posture and involve abdominal and lower back muscles in the process.
The versatility that physioballs provide is impressive as well, allowing for a significant range of exercises to be performed. It is this reason that makes them used in various fitness fields, from strength training to balance and yoga activities.
How to pick the right physioball for you
- The first thing you should start with is the size. Physioballs range in diameter size from 45 up to 80 cm. Generally, the manufacturers offer some information regarding the sizes recommended for various height ranges. For example, those who are shorter than 145 cm should use the 45 cm balls, while the 80 cm ones are indicated for those above 200 cm. However, these are just a mere guidance and do not always reflect reality. The best practice is to find a place where you can test a ball for yourself. The proper size should allow you to sit and keep your legs at a comfortable 90-degree angle in your posture.
- Firmness is another factor to consider. Air pressure is adjustable, yet some physioballs on the market are considerably firmer at their maximum than the rest. These are generally the best choices, as you can always go a few steps below when you feel the need.
- Material and construction quality is the next aspect. While all physioballs are elastic, there are variations in quality. Lower quality balls will simply become lopsided after regular use, making durability a serious problem. While it’s often difficult to predict this aspect, we do recommend that you read reviews about each ball that you are considering to buy.
- Another critical factor to take into consideration when purchasing a physioball is burst-resistance. What you want to find are balls with a rating of 500 kg or more; this rating not only includes your own body weight but also what you could use for weight training. In case the ball sustains damage, the anti-burst technology will have it deflate slowly instead of suddenly bursting. Needless to say, the protection this offers against accidents is invaluable.