Using a Yoga Ball to Improve Balance and Strength

Many yoga teachers incorporate the use of a yoga ball or stability/exercise ball in their classes. A yoga ball can add a fun, energizing and challenging twist to your workout.

These exercise balls are made from modified polyvinyl chloride and can be inflated with a portable foot pump. They are available in various sizes and when inflated properly can be used for both core and strength workouts.


A yoga ball (also known as a stability or exercise ball) is a large, inflated balance or Pilates type of tool used to target and improve smaller stabilizing muscles in the hips, shoulders, back and core. Incorporating a few yoga ball exercises into a fitness routine can provide some serious core and postural benefits.

Adding a couple of stability exercises to your workout can help strengthen the musculoskeletal system, increase functional strength and promote better posture in those who spend much of their day sitting. A well-designed exercise ball can also serve as a replacement for a chair in the workplace, with some patients and students having reported increased postural awareness and decreased pain.

Initially, a high-quality exercise ball is nothing more than a piece of modified polyvinyl chloride that has been inflated with air to create the appropriate size for a user’s height. The surface of the ball is usually non-slick, allowing clothing and skin to grip the material and preventing the ball from slipping out from beneath you as you move.


Incorporating yoga ball stretches into your workouts can help you reach deeper stretches and strengthen the core muscles. Exercise balls can also be used to perform pilates exercises such as the Stability Ball Jackknife (stand in high plank position with your feet on the exercise ball and bend the knees while rolling the ball toward your upper torso). Decline push-ups are another great exercise to do on the yoga ball.

The unstable surface of the yoga ball engages the stabilising muscles to work harder to maintain balance, improving posture and stability. Many people use yoga/exercise balls as a replacement for office chairs to promote good posture and to reduce back pain. In addition, bouncing on a yoga/exercise ball boosts NEAT activity throughout the day, burning extra calories and working the core muscles even while’relaxing’ or watching TV.

Core strength

A yoga ball provides a unique way to improve balance and core strength within your workout. The instability of the yoga ball forces your body to activate muscles in different ways than a standard exercise, increasing overall muscle recruitment while adding balance and stabilizing strength to your training.

For example, performing push-ups on a yoga ball requires more core activation because you have to engage your abs to keep from falling off the ball during each rep. This exercise also works your shoulders and chest.

In addition to enhancing core activation, yoga balls can be used to add variety and challenge to your weight training routines. For instance, a yoga exercise ball can be used in place of a bench during dumbbell bench presses to incorporate a core workout and increase balance during the movement. For the best results, make sure to use a yoga ball that is proportionate to your height so that it will be stable and safe to support your weight.

Range of motion

Adding a yoga ball to your workout is a simple and effective way to increase stability and flexibility. It also provides an alternative to sitting on a chair, which can help relieve back pain and improve posture.

You can perform a variety of exercises on a yoga ball to strengthen core muscles and improve your balance. Some common exercises include the balance push-up, which involves lying on the ball and lowering yourself to a push-up position. This exercise can be done for a number of reps or as part of a longer workout.

Often called exercise balls, Swiss or fitness balls, yoga balls are available in different sizes to suit your height. They are typically made from anti-burst PVC and come complete with a portable foot pump to easily inflate once received. They are a great piece of sports equipment for home use and a must have for fitness professionals.