Whether you work for a start-up, a massive private corporation, or a small non-profit, we all have one thing in common regardless of occupation: we sit, a lot, every day. Therefore employee ergonomics is usually a large concern for any successful business, so, a few members of the AdvantEdge team recently took a simple but drastic step to test one of the most commonly cited ways of bettering office wellbeing: replacing our desk chairs with exercise balls! You've probably heard of the trend, but are exercise balls a life-changer or just a gimmick? After some research and first-hand experience, the following are a few excerpts from an exercise article detailing the very real benefits of making this switch.
Forces proper spine alignment
Because an exercise ball is not stable, your body needs to try to balance itself on it. The perfect spinal posture is coincidently the easiest to balance with. Thus, your body will automatically try to align itself into the proper posture. This helps improve your spinal health, and decrease back pains.
Causes you to frequently change positions.
An exercise ball causes to you to change your position often to balance. For example, if you turn 45 degrees to face the phone, your body will assume a new position. This helps reduce damage caused by prolonged sitting in the same position.
Get that 6-pack you've been wanting.
Your body primarily uses your core (abdominal) muscles to help compensate for changes in balance. Thus, your essentially getting a low-key abdominal workout. This may not sound like a lot, but consider the amount of time you spend on your computer at the office, or at home. Those hours can build up, and result in a strengthening of ab muscles.
Improves your circulation.
Using an exercise ball will keep the blood flowing to all parts of your body, throughout the day. A desk chair on the other hand, reduces circulation to some parts of the body after prolonged use.
You’ll feel more energetic.
It has been proven that staying in one position, will make you more tired, while moving around and being active with give you more energy. With an exercise ball as a chair, you will feel much more energized after you finish your work
For further information on the benefits of sitting on an exercise ball, please read the full article linked above as well as this supplemental article. Ultimately if you do make the switch from desk chair to exercise ball, we can say with full confidence that the benefits are immediate and noticeable: you will feel it on the first day! So happy bouncing!