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  • Writer's pictureBankstown Physiotherapy

What are Balance Boards?

Balance boards, which include rocker boards and wobble boards, are a fitness tool you can stand on while performing exercises to help improve balance and posture, aid in rehabilitation, prevent lower body injuries, and increase core strength, among other benefits.

There are different balance boards to choose from, but ultimately it comes down to what works best for you.

A balance board is typically made of wood and has a flat top and a dome-shaped, unstable bottom in the center of the board. This allows the board to move in different directions.

Rocker boards can be rectangular or have a curved U-shape, which allows you to move from side to side or from front to back.

Round balance boards, also called wobble boards, allow you to move both side to side and front to back, but they also allow you to tilt the board in a circle (aka “around the world”).

Physical therapists often use balance boards in the rehabilitation of lower leg injuries — more specifically, ankle sprains. Balance boards are also a valuable training aid for preventing sports-related injuries and protecting against falls in people of all ages.

Additional benefits of using a balance board include:

improved balance and coordination

stronger lower leg muscles, especially the peroneals

increased motor skills

injury prevention, especially for the ankles

help with injury rehabilitation.

improved posture

Drawbacks of balance boards

Like any other piece of exercise equipment, a balance board can potentially be misused or present challenges, especially if you’re not familiar with how to use it.

The biggest drawback of balance boards is ironically also one reason it’s such a great fitness tool: It requires you to balance on an unstable surface.

Improving balance and ankle strength are two of the key benefits of this type of training.

That said, if you have weak or injured ankles, problems with your knees or hips, or limitations with your balance, using a balance board may present some challenges and safety issues, such as an increased risk of falling.

If you’re new to exercise or have any issues with your ankles, hips, or knees, consider working with a physical therapist or certified personal trainer. They can teach you how to use the balance board correctly.

Our Take

Balance boards are an excellent tool to address issues with balance, rehabilitation, injury prevention, and general fitness.

There are different styles of balance boards to choose from, but ultimately it comes down to what works best for you.

It’s a good idea to speak with a doctor, a physical therapist, or a qualified personal trainer before adding balance board training to your workout routine, especially if you have any underlying health conditions or ankle, knee, or hip injuries.

All in all, balance board exercises are a great way to increase your balance and stability, which will help you enjoy your favorite activities for years to come.

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