Giant Balls Scare Me

Yes, giant balls scare me. These ones in particular:

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*Photo from yoga.com

Balance balls, stability balls, exercise balls- whatever you call them- to me they are scary. Why, you might ask? Well it’s because I was always afraid my weight would cause them to explode and I would fall face first onto the ground. It was one of my many fears I had involving my weight and the possibility of crushing something under it. I was always hesitant to sit in a flimsy folding chair expecting it to break or to climb up a step ladder only to have it collapse under my feet. Yep, I was definitely a nervous person when it came to possible weight related damages and balance balls definitely fell into that category.

Yesterday, however, during my Pilates class me and the giant ball became much better acquainted. Heck, I would even go as far as to say we are on our way to forming a rather nice friendship. Yes, we got off to a rocky start but once we learned how to work together it was smooth sailing. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Elizabeth Rodriguez, my pilates instructor, for not laughing at me when I fell not once but twice off of my balance ball. That was pretty cool of her to keep her composure. I am sure it was funny to watch; they definitely weren’t graceful falls.

Our first exercise was very low anxiety; I didn’t have to get on the ball. We started out with the ball between our legs. Arms and legs both come up to the middle, hands grab the ball, arms and legs come down. Repeat switching the ball from hand to legs, legs to hands. Easy enough movements but they still challenged the core.

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*This is how we held the ball in our legs but during the exercise our arms were up too. Image from google.com

Exercise number two was where the panic set in. This time I was on top of the ball, it was under my chest, feet back against the wall with legs off the ground, a large percentage of my body weight on the ball. Yikes! We did two different poses during this exercise; head and chest lift up with arms out in front of our body and head and chest lift up and arms circle as if we were swimming. I definitely had to stop a couple of times because I was freaking out. I keep thinking that the ball was going to burst. It really freaked me out. Finally, I had to tell myself to calm the eff down. I had to realize I was smaller and that my weight was far below the limitation of the ball. I needed to realize I was safe. Once I worked through that I was good to go.

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*Same body position from the chest down the difference being in the position of our arms. Image from http://www.eBay.com

The last exercise we did, which was the most fun AND the one in which I fell twice, was by far the trickiest. I will do my best to explain it. To get into the starting position we placed the ball under our chest, hands down in front like in a pushup position. We walked our hands forward as the ball stayed in place- the ending result being our body in a pushup type position with the ball under our knees/calves, like the animated picture below. The exercise was to pull our knees in bending our legs and then straighten them back out- like the picture below but without the chair.

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*Image from http://www.clipartof.com

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*Image from google.com

I fell the first time when I got onto the ball as I was walking my hands forward and once the ball was positioned under my knees/calves and I tried to stop I had too much forward momentum and I basically rolled myself forward, off the ball. Dacia goes down! Lol!

The second fall happened once we finished with that same exercise. I was doing great with moving my legs in and out but once I stopped I had no idea how I would be able to get off of the ball. I fell off because I had no other choice. I just rolled myself to the side and braced myself for impact with the floor. I am pretty sure another woman in my class did the same thing as I looked over as she was crawling up for the floor. Falling didn’t bother me though; I was laughing my butt off.

That class was exhilarating. I pushed myself outside of my comfort zone and did something new, something I had no idea I could do. It was an eye-opener. I think I might buy one of those balance balls to use at home. I guess I’m not really scared of giant balls after all 😉

Thanks for reading!

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October 5, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , . Exercise, Fitness, Pilates.

4 Comments

  1. Simply Sidney replied:

    I read this post the day you published and I forgot to comment, had to come back and say this was a lot of fun to read. I’ve so been there, falling off the ball. This is a another workout I need to get back to, I haven’t gotten out the ball yet and I need to, thanks for the reminder!!

    • Dacia replied:

      Oh, I need to ask you something. I know you do pilates. Any DVD recommendations? I want to add more pilates to help strengthen my core and arms (my two worst areas) but there is only one evening class at synergy. Not about to join a third gym. Lol!

      • Simply Sidney replied:

        I have two sets of tapes (yes VHS, I’ve had them a while)

        first is Winsor Pilates, I love all of them, the abs workout is awesome the 20-minute workout hits all areas and the buns & thighs workout is awesome- she has a workout for what ever you need http://www.amazon.com/Winsor-Pilates-DVDs-Set-Accelerated/dp/B0019S3HC0/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1318433643&sr=8-4

        my second recommendation is the Stott Pilates Starring Moira Merrithew, my collection has all 3 levels for mat, band and ball. Moira is great at explaining in depth. Doubt you’d need level 1 in her workouts. But I know for me her level 1 band is just has hard if not harder than her level 2 band??

        I’d think you’d be happy with either, let me know if you have any questions

      • Dacia replied:

        Thanks! I will definitely be checking them out!

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