Mindful Movement with the BOSU® Balance Trainer
The BOSU® Balance Trainer is an excellent tool for mindful movement practices such as yoga and Pilates to enhance strength, core stability and mobility. Benefits of the addition of the Balance Trainer to mat based exercises are many. The softer surface of the dome provides more comfort. Elevation, on the dome or platform sides, assists with alignment especially in seated positions which can be very challenging. The increased balance challenge and proprioceptive activation in all exercises enhances body awareness and neurological activation. In mindful movement exercises, both on and off the dome, you will gain enhanced results with more comfort. The BOSU® Balance Trainer provides for multiple body positions on the dome, from standing, kneeling or seated to supine to prone.
The following three sequences demonstrate different approaches and uses of the Balance Trainer. In the standing series it elevates the floor, providing greater success in achieving the mobility required to perform a yoga sun salutation. At the same time, it creates the challenge of instability in the upper body. In the kneeling series, the cushioning gives comfort to the knees, allowing you to focus on mobility training and greater activation of the core muscles to stabilize while on top of the dome. In the seated series, the dome elevates the hips, providing better pelvic alignment which enables greater range of motion of the hips in flexion. Finally, the instability of the dome activates the core to stabilize while in a seated position.
As you perform the following three mindful movement sequences, focus on breathing and listening to your body.
Sequence #1 Sun Salutation
Standing behind the dome, forward bend, step or jump to plank pose, lower to the dome, upward facing dog, downward facing dog, three-legged dog to lunge, lunge with rotation, step to downward facing dog. Repeat on the other side.
Sequence #2 Kneeling Cat and Cow
Kneeling on top of the dome, cat and cow, low lunge, dynamic hip rock, lunge with rotation to quadriceps stretch, kneeling push-up to child’s pose. Repeat on the other side.
Sequence #3 Seated V-Sit
Seated on the dome, forward bend, wide legged forward bend, butterfly pose, supine spine extension.
Helen Vanderburg, BPE, Exercise Physiology, is a BOSU® Master Trainer and Development Team member. She is co-owner of The ACADEMY, fitness, yoga and spin studio, author of Fusion Workouts and Commercial Fitness Education Manager for Balanced Body. Helen has won many fitness industry awards and is one of Canada’s most influential people in the fitness industry.
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