Rocker and wobble balance boards have been used for decades to improve balance, coordination and postural control. I remember having to do this exercise at the Athletic Institute to help me with my balance and co-ordination. It brings back memories.
Wobble board exercises replicate what happens to the muscles, tendons, and ligaments of the feet, ankle and lower legs during running, and as a result build them up for the stresses that they must endure.
Balance boards, wobble boards, rocker boards all look like toys for kids but they are very effective training tools for overall fitness and athletic ability. And they are fun to use too.
How wobble boards work
Our bodies have sensors all around which sense where parts of the body are even without looking. If the ankle or lower leg is damaged then these sensors can also be damaged. If we have a leg injury or weakness, these sensors don’t work so well, increasing the chance of re-injuring the leg or ankle.
This is why some people once they sprain their ankle, continue to sprain it repeatedly. Using a wobble board on a regular basis can help retrain the sensors and improve co-ordination, preventing further injury. All we have to do is stand on the board and try to keep it horizontal, without the edges touching the floor.
The possibilities for the wobble board uses are endless, but below are a handful of several specific ways that balance board training can be used in place of other training methods:
Wobble board exercises starting easy and getting harder
- While sitting down place the wobble board under the feet and slowly rotate it a number of times in each direction;
- Stand on the wobble board, feet shoulder width apart. Hold on to a chair for support if needed and rock the board forwards and backwards, then side to side. Do this for 2 to 3 minutes;
- Stand on the wobble board, feet shoulder width apart. Rotate the wobble board round so that the edge of the board is in contact with the floor at all times. Again, try this for 2 to 3 minutes;
- Stand on the wobble balance board, again feet shoulder width apart. Rock the board front to back for 1 minute then side to side for one minute;
- Balance on the wobble board for as long as you can without the edges touching the floor. Aim for over 2 minutes without touching the floor;
- Rotate the wobble board in a circle but do not allow the edge of the board to touch the floor. Aim for 2 minutes;
- Stand on the wobble board with one leg. Rock the board from front to back for 1 minute and then side to side for 1 minute;
- Again, stand on the wobble board with one leg only. Rotate the board in a circular motion in one direction for 1 minute, then repeat in the other direction;
Try to balance on the wobble board with one leg only; When you have mastered all of the above you should have strong stable ankles and be an expert. Now try it all with your eyes closed.
Source: Physiotherapy treatment.com