How to choose a Pilates ball?
Pilates balls (soft balls or mini balls) are yet another way to juice up your regular mat routine. Small and lightweight, Pilates mini balls are easy to transport. You could use them anywhere –in your at-home gym or at the studio. Ready to find the right ball? Here’s how.
- Check how easy the ball is to pump and deflate – This is going to be useful, especially when you travel with your mini Pilates ball.
- Check if it loses air – Make sure you’ll be able to do at least one Pilates workout without pumping the ball in the meantime.
- Check its texture and stickiness – The ball should glue to your skin. The stickiness might help in positions like twist, plank, hundred, or when you stretch on the floor.
- Check if it comes with a straw or a pump to blow it up – You might start off your practice immediately after you receive your package.
- Check if there is an exercise book or a DVD included - Even if you’re a seasoned Pilates practitioner, a book or DVD with modified exercises might zing up your Pilates mat workout. Check available colors – Any prop should energize you to pursue excellence in your control and form of Pilates movements.
You may ask “What size of Pilates ball should I get?” Its size ranges from 2.5 – 10 in. in diameter. Test out various sizes and check how comfortable each ball is.
What is the difference between a Pilates soft ball and an exercise ball?
- A Pilates mini ball is between 2.5 - 10 in. in diameter. You can easily grab it in your hands. When choosing the right size of Pilates ball, your height doesn’t matter.
- An exercise ball is bigger, with a diameter ranging from 45 – 85 cm depending on your height. When choosing an exercise ball, your height is the most important factor.
Why should you exercise with a Pilates ball?
- It improves your posture and alignment.
- It causes muscle activation.
- It makes the exercises more challenging.
- It could be used for toning and strengthening your core muscles.
- It might bring more fun to the workout.
- It supports your lumbar spine, upper body, and neck.
- It gives feedback to your body on engaged muscles.
- It could be used for stability, balance, and concentration.
Who can use Pilates mini balls?
Pilates mini balls could be used by anyone, no matter the level of Pilates practice. A beginner? It might help you support your spine in a neutral position. An advanced practitioner? It might give you enough challenge that you’ll be working your sweat out.
How to use a Pilates ball?
Put the ball between your knees, inner thighs, ankles, or under your knee when on all-fours. You could use it for massaging your neck, lumbar spine, or wrists. It’s also used for supporting pelvis. With its gentle support, the ball is a great tool to be used in physical therapy.
Although the ball is not part of the Pilates original Contrology workout, it might assist you in mastering the nuances of the method’s form and control. In the Pilates repertoire, you will find exercises like a hundred, bridge, or a push-up, which could be transformed into a mat workout with a ball.
How to inflate a Pilates ball?
- It shouldn’t be firm.
- You should be able to grab and squeeze it – you decide on the most comfortable firmness. What’s the right firmness? Imagine a deflated volleyball.
Joseph Pilates once said, “Pilates is gaining the mastery of your mind over the complete control over your body.” With a Pilates ball, fine tune with your body, and keep your shape up.
Looking for some other Pilates accessories?