We cannot deny the fact that many of us are starting to love the concept of riding a board. But there are cases that the time or the weather hinders you from taking a ride on your board on the beach or street when it comes to surfing or longboarding. Aside from that, if you are living in a colder area, having a balance board is a must if you love skateboarding. Besides, you can create a balance board on your own. The steps that you need to do are to cut, screw, and glue. Easy steps, right?
So, if you can’t hit the ocean or the street because of the varying factors, you might consider building your own balance board. A balance board is perfect to use for indoor activities and will also help you to enhance your boarding skills. Aside from that, using a skateboard will also help you to have a hardcore and great strength of legs. In this article, we are going to give you the easy steps in making your DIY Balance Board that will help you to maintain and improve your core building abilities without the need to leave your house.
But, before we jump into the steps that you should do to make your own balance board, let us first define what a balance board is. So, if you want to know more about it, just keep on reading and enjoy!
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What is a Balance Board?
When we say balance board, it is an equipment that is being used for musical training, therapy, brain development, athletic training, balance training, recreation, and any other types of personality development.
It is a device that looks like a see-saw that a rider will stand on. Usually, the rider will put his or her right and left foot at the board’s reverse ends. When the rider starts to ride on it, he or she is required to maintain a good balance. Make sure that the two edges of the board will not touch the ground. Aside from that, ensure that you will not slip off or fall out from the board.
When you are riding on a balance board, expect that there are different challenges that you might experience. These challenges will be presented by its 5 main types, as well as its subtypes. Some of these challenges can be done by a three-year-old child and adults, while others are suitable for the professional athletes since some of them are dangerous and difficult and needs enough speed and steepness.
When it comes to their designs, the stability of each type and its subtypes makes them different from each other.
The Users and the Uses of a Balance Board
Way back in 1953, a man named Stanley Washbum, Jr. created a balance board for recreation, the boards that he created had been popularized by many surfers and skiers in practicing their skills on balancing during the poor natural condition or off-seasons. The said device was also used by many as a piece of training equipment for martial arts and sports, as well as or non-athletic and physical fitness purposes.
A balance board is being utilized to enhance core strength, weight distribution, motor coordination skills, and balance. Aside from that, some people use this device to prepare an individual before they get older, to prevent injuries, sports injuries, and most specifically, the knee and ankle injuries.
The uses of a balance board that is beyond its athletic purposes have been more popular. Some of its uses include to enhance the cognitive and sensory integration skills of a child that has developmental issues, have a wide range of neutral networks that will allow both the right and left brain hemispheres to connect with the other individuals. Thus, it helps to enhance its efficiency.
Benefits of Using a Balance Board
Performing a balance board ride on your day-to-day will not require you to allot your time together with your hectic working schedule. It only means that you can incorporate this routine to your current schedule easily. Whether you are using a balance board for improving your balance and stability, adding to your daily workout, or for a rehabilitation program, you can ensure that it can give you lots of benefits.
Enhancing your stability and balance can help you to improve functional strength, boost coordination, decrease your susceptibility from injuries, increase your posture, and treats in rehabilitation. Aside from that, it is also an easy and fun activity.
A balance board is being used together with the different strength workouts that will help you to get the best out of exercise efforts. In this section, we ate going to give you the benefits that you can get from riding on a balance board. If you want to know more about it, keep on reading and enjoy!
A Balance Board Will Benefit You in the Water
One of the most common issues that you might experience while using a balance board is to fall out and get an injury from a hard surface. This is the most concern of individuals that have arthritis. That is one of the main reasons why training on a balance board is mostly done on the water.
An aquatic type of balance board will provide you with numerous benefits on land balancing. On the other hand, once you fall out from your balance board, you will land on the water’s soft surface. A balance board that is being used for training on the water is being modified to enable the rider to stay safe from injuries. If your concern is to avoid falling out on the hard surface, then a balance board is great equipment for you.
A Balance Board Will Develop the Mind-Muscle Coordination
When a person has a strong focus on the things that he wants to achieve, there is a high possibility that he can get it successfully. This is one of the benefits that you can get from using a balance board. This is more evident in balance board training compared to the workouts done in a gym. There are lots of individuals who go to the gym usually cruise through their exercises like they paint numbers. Aside from that, they also follow different sets of repetitive schemes without implementing their exercises in their daily life. It only means that they usually fail to have a better mind-muscle coordination.
In connection with that, a person starts to learn, connecting their mind to the exercise they are performing. Their mind is focused on building a strong muscle. Their mind feels the extension and contraction and focuses their attention on building their forms. The only thing that matters about them is to perform the sets of workouts given to them by their gym instructors.
Learning to be trained in this method is not easy, especially for those starters out there. But, with the use of a balance board, you will be forced to perform it simultaneously. You can’t make your mind to stroll in a second. It is because each second that you will ride the balance board will require you to switch what your muscles are currently doing.
By spending some of your time riding on a balance board, it will ensure that you will enhance your mind and muscle coordination. When you have a good mind and muscle coordination, it only means that you can also get positive results – whether in your work or during your exercises.
Balance Board is Ideal for Kids
During your childhood, it is essential for you to develop your coordination and balance. It is amazing how a one-year-old child can learn how to walk properly. On the other hand, it is sad to know that there are lots of children out there who don’t have the basics of body balance, coordination, and awareness. All of these are required to complete a particular task.
Allowing your child to perform some balancing tricks with a balance board will help them to build their self-confidence in this area. It is due to the fact that balance boards are quite similar to skateboards, which have a strong impact to the teenagers. Since the balance board is quite low to the surface, they are not considered to be threatening.
A balance board is used during the physical education classes in every corner of the world that will help the child to enhance their coordination and balance. Aside from that, training on a balance board will also maximize the child’s core strength and posture. Some people also claim that balance board training is also proven effective in helping a child who has some problems, including cerebral palsy, to maximize coordination. Owning a balance board in your home is great equipment for your child. Aside from its enjoyable experience, your child will surely enjoy it while giving them a lot of benefits.
A Balance Board Will Make You Feel and Look More Stronger
You can feel and look stronger even though you don’t go to the gym regularly. Since a balance board exercise will help you to make stronger muscles without carrying heavy workout equipment, there is nothing for you to worry about body pains.
If you are going to enhance your balance, you can make your working muscle groups that are inactive before you perform balance board training. There are some cases that the group of your “small stabilizer muscles” that are coordinating with your thighs, back, and chest, which are your star muscles, are the considered difference that lies between the failure and success on a lift.
When you are going to perform a balance board training, your small group of muscle stabilizers is the one that plays a vital role in this aspect. When you usually get an improper balance, these groups of muscles are contracting together, thus, helping you to achieve your perfect balance. On the other hand, a group of your larger muscles is also working to help you get your proper stability. When you prefer to perform balance board training on a flat area, including ground, these groups of muscles are not being involved in the play.
You will be benefited from the works of your muscles that will help in keeping you a good balance by exercising some of the classical bodyweight resistance exercises and weight training on your balance board. As you do this, you can now improve both the effect, as well as the intensity of the environment dramatically.
You can also perform some push-ups while your hands are placed over the deck while your feet are slightly-parted on the floor. By doing so, the muscles that lie on your shoulders, arms, quads, as well as on your core are involved in the play. To perform a beneficial and more demanding workout with a balance board, you might consider putting your feet and hands on the board.
A Balance Board Will Enhance Your Posture
We cannot deny the fact that these days, most of the individuals out there have a poor body posture. This is one of the common issues that we can get from looking and using our phones for a longer period. Whether you are using your mobile phone, computer, or even laptop, they are a great contributor to your poor body position. Habitually, we usually curved our body forward with drooping forward shoulders and rounded back.
As a result of doing these positions regularly, we have developed a body position that has hunched shoulders and eyes that are always looking on the ground. A poor body position does not only give you a negative first impression, but it can also cause some severe problems for your spine.
A balance board is considered to be an antidote to this issue. This is also equipment that will provide you with a wide range of solutions to those times that you usually spent browsing your phones. By giving enough strength to the stabilizer muscles that are located in your torso, it will help you in building a stronger framework of your spinal cord. As a result, it will offer you the power to maintain your joints in its right place and keep high shoulders.
Aside from that, if you are going to use a balance board as your training in correcting your body position, you will also reduce your susceptibility to serious body injuries. It will also give you the chance to make a more beautiful self-image to the people around you.
A Balance Board Will Help you to Develop Core Muscles
Your core muscles are composed of the numerous muscles that extend and overlap from the neck’s base up to the muscles that lie in between your legs. Aside from giving a stronger support to your torso, the core muscles will also help you in stabilizing your spine. Each movement that we are going to perform will always rely on our core stability and strength.
Performing a balance board training will constantly test your core. When you have an imbalance body position, your infraspinatus, abdominals, and intercostals are firing when you are making a slight movement to upright your position. As a result, this will strengthen your trunk’s stabilizing muscles.
Training on a balance board to strengthen your core will also ensure that you are not prone to serious body damages and injuries. The usual strains that you felt on your limbs will be decreased, and you can maintain your body parts that are prone to injuries healthy. The lower back is one of the good examples of injury-prone areas.
It is Progressive
If you are thinking of stopping your training with a balance board because you don’t want your friends and gym peers to see how foolish you are in front of them, think again. There are lots of individuals out there who stop this kind of training because of the improper coordination of their muscles. The exercises that you can perform with your balance board are ranging from easy, moderate, and hard. But, if you are a starter and think that you don’t have a proper muscle coordination yet, you can try performing the easy balance board exercises. When you think that you can perform the more challenging one, you can try it to get more self-confidence to perform it in front of many people.
For your information, balance boards differ from each other. As we mentioned a while ago, a balance board is composed of five main types, and each type will provide you with different subtypes. If you are a starter to perform a balance board training, we recommend you to utilize a rocker board. This is a type of a balance board that has a flat deck mounted with an attached fulcrum. Tilting from back to front and vice versa are the possible movements that you can do with a rocker board. The challenge here is to ensure that the two edges of the board will not touch the floor. Make sure that you will maintain an upright position while balancing your body on the board.
Once you have enough confidence in using your rocker board, you can now consider trying out the rocker-roller board. The movements that you can do with the rocker boards are similar movements that you can do with this type of board. The only difference with this rocker-roller board is that you can perform the sideways movement with it. It is because it features a cylindrical fulcrum.
Upon mastering the movements with rocker board and rocker-roller board, you can now move on to wobble board. This is a type of balance board that is utilizing a semi-spherical fulcrum that has boards with flat sides. With the use of this wobble board, you can now perform a movement for about 360 degrees, which will offer you with a harder challenge.
On the other hand, if you want to perform a more challenging movement, you can try using the Ring and Sphere type of balance board. The two mentioned types of balance boards come up with a fulcrum that is not attached to the board. Instead, the fulcrum of these boards looks like a small ball which will enable you to perform whatever movements you want. It only means that you are presented with a more serious challenge that is meant for those who have mastered all the movements offered to the by the former types of the balance board.
A Balance Board Will Help you to Improve Your Brain
As you improve your body posture and balance, your skills to give your attention and full focus to a particular object will also improve at the same time. Your brain’s capability in connecting its left and right hemisphere and enhancing the fine motor abilities is always dependable on the alignment of your body, which is mostly called the “vestibular processing.” This process is being described by professionals as your three-dimensional perception of your surroundings.
One of the founders of vestibular processing enhancement, whose name is Dr. Jean Ayers, utilized the balance boards during her sessions for sensory integration therapy. She is the one who is working with individuals that have sensory integration disorder. Dr. Ayers have been conducted trials, and she found out that training for a good balance is a great contributor to enhancing one’s concentration, language development, coordination, as well as eye control.
She also finds out that performing a balance board training will force a person to utilize his or her neutral networks to have a good connection of their body and mind. It only means that it will help these individuals to become a much better learner.
A Balance Board Will Make You Less Prone to Injuries
Most of the injuries that happen in the sporting arena and even in our daily life are caused of poor body coordination and balance. An ordinary training on a balance board will enable you to be aware of spatially. It will also allow you to correct your body posture immediately when you think that you are in danger. You will also have enhanced proprioception which will enable your body to deal with the different balance-based challenges effectively.
A balance board training will also help you to have stronger key joints that are usually the reason for injuries. When we are talking about men’s sports, such as basketball, ankle sprains are the general reasons for injury. American Journal of Sports Medicine is a study that was launched that claims that were performing regular balance board training will decrease the ankle sprain incidence. This is real when it comes to athletes who usually have ankle sprains during their game. The researchers have claimed that performing a training on your balance board will make your ankle joint stronger, which will make it more agile, robust, and stronger.
Steps to Build a DIY Balance Board
As we mentioned a while ago, balance boards are popular in improving your balancing skills and core strength. It is because standing on an unbalanced surface will enable you to exercise your body and control your balance. So, if you want to make your own balance board, you are in the right place. So, without further ado, let’s get started.
Choose Your Preferred Size
The size of a balance board will always depend upon your height. Make sure that your board has a shoulder-width and wide size, and long enough to make a stable riding. Also, ensure that the board should have a wide width so that your feet will not hang on the sides. We recommend you to make 14 inches by 33 inches board.
Buy Plywood with ¾ Size
We also recommend you to purchase a thick-walled and large diameter ABS or PVC pipe. Make sure that you will purchase a plywood that is long enough to suit your board’s width. Also, ensure that it is sturdy enough to avoid flexing. The next thing that you should do is to cut the plywood into size, as well as the PVC if necessary.
With the help of the extra plywood you have been cut earlier, cut it into two pieces that are 5.1 centimeters or two inches wide and 14 inches of board’s length.
Lock the two pieces plywood at the one edge of the deck, and for stoppers, lock the two sides of the board. It is recommended to use since it is designed for your safety. If you are a starter, it is a must for you to do it. But, if you think you can handle it with yourself, you can skip this step. This step will ensure that your board will not slip out the end of the pipes as you use it.
Lay the ABC or PVC pipe on a flat surface to attach the board over it – before you proceed with this step, you will need to use your knee and elbow pads, wrist guards, and safety helmet. Again, it is a must for you to wear this protective equipment since your safety will always be the concern. But, if you think you will not get hurt while doing this step, you can consider not wearing either of the said equipment. To do this step, carefully step on to the board, with the help of a chair or a person who can give you a support. After that, check if you can handle your balance on the board.
Balance Board Tips for Starters
As you start standing over the balance board, make sure that you will always look forward. By looking forward, you can ensure that you can keep your balance properly. Aside from that, make sure that you will always maintain your shoulders and heads upright. This will ensure that you will have a perfect balance on your balance board.
Find Your Comfort Zone
If you are planning to be one of the best skateboarders out there, make sure that you will first use a balance board to improve your skateboarding skills. Also, we recommend you to use a pair of shoes which you think are suitable for the concept. On the other hand, if you are planning to be a good surfer, it is a good thing if you are going to ride a balance board barefooted. This will ensure that you will have a good grip on the board.
Bend Your Knees
As you stand over the board, make sure that you will bend your knees. Bend your knees more than you do since it is needed to get your perfect balance. To do this, lower down yourself slowly and back up slightly. Performing up and down movements with the healthy squats will enable you to have a stronger leg muscle. The intensity that you can get from a balance board will also enhance the strength of the muscles that lie on your whole body.
Once you think you have a sturdier balance with your balance board, it is time for you to improve the level of your exercise. If you want to improve your exercise intensity, you might consider performing a rolling back and forth on your balance board. This exercise looks like the tricks that you usually see to the skateboarders on the street. If you roll back and forth, the entire muscles in your body will be forced to work. There are lots of exercises that you can perform with your balance board, which are also ideal for the starters. Aside from that, these balance board exercises will also help you to enhance your balance, coordination, and muscle strength.
Skateboarding is a widely known sport among the youngsters out there. If you want to be a professional skateboarder, we recommend you to use a balance board first. But, different brands and models of a balance board means that they come up with different price rate. In connection with that, a high-quality balance board is quite costly. So, for you to save more time and money buying your own balance board, we have provided you with the steps that you can follow to make your own balance board. We hope it would help you!