Discover the Latest Rave to Hit Fitness Centers


You may have seen them in the gym: half of a large rubber ballthat’s flat on one side. They’re often blue in color and looklike a gigantic outtie belly button. “What are those things?”you wonder. Well they’re BOSU balls (or balance trainers). It’sthe latest rave to hit fitness centers across America.

BOSU is an acronym that stands for “Both Sides Up”. You can usethe balls, also referred to as trainers, or balance trainers, oneither side. Whether the rounded bouncy dome part is up or theflat 25 inch platform side is up, you’ll get different types ofbalance challenges.

This cross-training fitness invention has its origins in thefield of medicine, balance, functional and sports specifictraining. It offers a different means to make exercise moreappealing and effective for average people, fitness fanatics andhighly trained athletes.

So what do you do with it? You can walk, run, step, hop, jump andleap on the BOSU trainer. You can work it at an easy steadyrate-pace that can be maintained for long periods or push theintensity with anaerobic intervals. Or do some stretching on it. Active stretches use the muscles of the body to move a body partwhereas passive stretching uses gravity or an outside force toput stretch-tension on the target muscle(s). While standing orkneeling on the dome, you can move the upper body lower, higher,to the sides or by reaching for and picking up cards from variouslocations on the floor, or by touching and/or relocating conesthat have been placed in close proximity to the dome. It’s greatfor working your trunk too. Maintaining spinal alignment isimportant to low back health and sports performance.

Many sports teams use BOSU training too. Says Bennie Wylie,Assistant Strength Coach of the Dallas Cowboys “I implement theBOSU trainer during our off-season program for core strengthtraining and rehabilitation of ankle and knee problems. It is agreat piece of equipment and gives us an important extradimension to our overall fitness program. Almost all of theplayers use the BOSU trainer in some fashion on a regularbasis.”

So the next time you overhear a conversation in the grocery storeor your friend tells you that she’s going to the 5:30 p.m. BOSUclass at the Y, you’ll know what they’re talking about. Betteryet, give it a try yourself!

The information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to medically diagnose, treat or cure any disease. Consult a health care practitioner before beginning any health care program.

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Author: Piyawut Sutthiruk

Losing weight will keep you healthy and have a long life. Cheer Up!

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