The BOSU® Balance Trainer is a dynamic tool used in many fitness and wellness environments and is a great companion to utilize with Pilates-inspired movements. Whether it be group fitness programming in a club setting, sports specific training or rehabilitative and physical therapy scenarios, the Balance Trainer is the perfect portable apparatus for fitness and wellness professionals to explore the benefits of integrating a bit of Pilates into client workouts. Here are two exercises, tips, and reasons why Pilates plus the BOSU® Balance Trainer are a matched pair!
Core Work Meets Balance
In Pilates, the term “using the powerhouse” (or core) is the epicenter of much of the method and exercises. Bringing the labile surface of the BOSU® Balance Trainer into many of the traditional trunk exercises -- such as Double Leg Stretch, Single
Leg Stretch, Criss-Cross and Planking Variations -- enhances proprioception (where your body is in space), challenges your center of gravity, and forces you to work on your reflexes or righting response muscles. It promotes invisible learning while waking up neural pathways and illuminating the brain/body connection. Of course, the aforementioned exercises can be difficult for some doing them on the floor, but try bringing the Balance Trainer into class for a fun and functional core plus balance progression!
Dynamic Flexibility Finds Fun
One of the BIG benefits which Pilates offers is the opportunity to incorporate a lot of mobility, dynamic flexibility and articulation of the spine and joints. Good spinal mobility is critical for sport specific movements and enhanced performance, but let’s be honest, we also need good movement of the spine for activities of daily life. It helps us keep moving with the “3 Es,” also known as, ease, economy, and efficiency. Using the BOSU® Balance Trainer along with exercises such as Swan Dive Rocking allows for a bigger range of motion and a lot of fun. Placing the dome down and the platform up during this exercise encourages playfulness with rocking and rolling while achieving mobility and spinal extension in the deep longitudinal system (very critical for upright posture!). For those who struggle with back extension, the BOSU® Ball also lifts the body up off the floor and allows a fulcrum point so that you and your clients can access better mobility in the upper thoracic region of the back. Remind your inner child to come out and enjoy!
It’s time to expand your workout options with the BOSU® Balance Trainer. Let Pilates prime you for inspirational core sequences to add to your classes, small groups and private sessions!
Erika Quest, the owner of Studio Q Pilates Conditioning in Laguna Beach, CA, is a member of the BOSU® Elite Development Team, a Balanced Body® Master Instructor, BASI graduate, public speaker and instructor for Pilates Anytime.