Skip to main content

ToughJobs may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

Do exercise ball chairs really work?

If you are looking to switch up your go-to seat, there’s a current craze that’s all about exercise ball chairs. The real question is if they really work and improve your posture, as they claim.
A common conclusion is that sitting all day is bad for you. Sitting in a basic office chair requires no muscle use at all. Also, slouching in a chair can worsen your posture and core strength, as noted by Prevention.
It is generally believed and accepted that sitting in a regular chair all day is bad for you. However, will switching out your desk chair for a bouncy exercise ball actually be better for you?

The cons of exercise ball chairs

Sitting on a ball increases pressure on the lower back and spine, which causes discomfort over time. Extended periods of sitting can also lead to poor posture. It does not matter whether you are on an office chair or an exercise ball chair — prolonged sitting needs to be avoided. You can combat potential injury and discomfort by alternating between standing and sitting at your desk. Or, take short breaks to walk around — aim for a break of 10 to 15 minutes every two hours. While exercise balls can be beneficial for your posture and core strength, they do not completely prevent back pain or injury.

exercise ball chair
Reza Estakhrian/Shutterstock

The pros of exercise ball chairs

On the bright side, the exercise ball chair requires you to use more muscles for sitting upright with good posture than a regular chair does. Sitting on the ball requires subtle muscle contractions of the core, hip, and leg muscles to maintain balance. This contributes to muscle tone. Exercise balls can help your muscles get more toned while improving your core strength. Without back support, your core is more engaged when you’re on an exercise ball. You will ultimately improve your stability and balance, and you can increase your daily calorie burn by a small amount.
Having an exercise ball as a chair can also encourage you to use it for short workout breaks. You can take five minutes out of your workday here and there to do short exercises that will help you refocus and get your blood flowing. Always remember to pair your exercise ball chair with occasional standing or walking to experience the best results. 

The best exercise ball chair 

An exercise ball chair can be called a stability ball, a Swiss ball, a yoga ball, or a birthing ball. No matter what you choose to call it, a quality exercise ball needs to support the weight of you, stay inflated with air, and deflate slowly if punctured. Wirecutter, a New York Times company that focuses on product reviews, spent more than 30 hours researching seven of the best exercise balls out of over 80 models. They found that the TheraBand Pro Series SCP Exercise Ball, which costs $46.25, is the best exercise ball for most people. This ball is made of sturdy and flexible plastic. It has a supportive seat and a plug that provides a tight seal. The ball comes in diameters of 26 centimeters, 55 cm, and 75 cm. It also comes in blue, red, green, and yellow.
An exercise ball chair can be a great alternative to a standard chair. It is still very important to alternate between sitting and standing throughout the day and to take short breaks to walk around. 

It is easy to quickly adopt new trends, which is why doing research ahead of time is always important. Using an exercise ball chair in place of your typical work chair can improve your core and posture while toning your muscles. However, despite these wonderful benefits, it’s still important to take regular breaks to exercise your legs. Sitting all day, regardless of the chair type, is bad for the back, neck, and legs. If you give yourself the breaks your body needs by standing and walking around, you’ll be better able to reap the benefits that an exercise ball chair can provide. 

Editors' Recommendations

ToughJobs
5 skills you will need to be a leader everyone wants to work for
boss talking to employees

What it means to be a leader can be an influenced and predisposed perception. It can vary depending on what types of qualities are important to each individual and how they demonstrate those qualities.
Leadership early on was usually a top-down approach. CEOs and other executives reigned as the people with the most power and the most-valued opinions. Leadership entailed giving direction in a noncollaborative system. Leadership was about power.
Opinions about what makes a leader, however, have changed considerably. Being a leader in the 21st century is about possessing the skills that will yield respect from your employees. Being a leader also means that you don’t need the words “manager” and “director” in your title to lead. There are five skills that any successful leader will need to earn the trust and respect of the people they work with. 
Be a good listener

Many companies are encouraging employee participation across all employment levels. A leader who reaches out to their employees for ideas and creative thinking are saying that they value them. Learning to listen, and being genuine about it, is a key skill. If you take the time to hear what someone has to say without demanding an answer right away or providing them with advice, you instill confidence in them. Listening like this is also known as active listening. You can learn to look beyond the words. Search for other cues like body language and use eye contact to show that you are fully engaged in the conversation.
A leader who listens is one that will be respected. Everyone wants to be heard. Whether they have a brilliant idea or a serious concern, you want them to feel like they can come to you. If you listen well and make them feel heard, you are one step closer to being a valued leader. 
Practice self-compassion
Being a leader can have its challenges, even for people who have a natural skill for it. Self-compassion is geared toward you. While being compassionate toward your employees is imperative, it’s also important to be compassionate toward yourself. This means you must be comfortable admitting that you don’t always have the answer and be okay with the strange and unfamiliar. Practicing self-compassion and being equipped with the skills to take on feedback can make you a more humble leader. Leaders who think they know everything miss out on criticism and ultimately, improvements. A self-compassionate leader supports the growth mindset needed to be successful.
Self-compassion makes you more vulnerable and will help your employees feel more comfortable coming to you with their ideas and issues. Because of this, you can help support their professional development.
Learn to be empathetic 

Read more
How long do LED bulbs last?

The light-emitting diode (LED) is one of today's most energy-efficient lighting technologies. A high-quality LED light bulb can last longer than other types. They are durable and provide comparable or better light quality than a normal light bulb. LED bulbs are great for saving energy, which saves money. Many LED bulbs use 75 percent less energy and can last around 25 times longer than a regular bulb. It can be beneficial to know what types of LED bulb last the longest and which one can fit your needs the most.  How long an LED bulb lasts, however, is dependent on usage and brand. 
The average lifespan of an LED bulb
LEDs are famous for being extremely long-lasting products. Many LEDs have a rated life of up to 50,000 hours. According to many manufacturers of LED lighting, these bulbs have a life expectancy of 20,000 to 50,000 hours. If the bulb is used eight hours per day, the bulb will likely last around 17 years. If used for 12 hours per day, these bulbs can last more than 11 years. This is roughly 30 times longer than incandescent bulbs and five times longer than compact fluorescents. Most households do not leave lights on for many hours per day, so typically, an LED light bulb can surpass 17 years. If your home is energy-efficient and your family is environmentally aware, you can make your light bulbs last for 20 years or more.

LEDs are known for outlasting other bulbs. Their durability and energy-saving features can help you save money and avoid replacing bulbs for years upon years. LEDs use much less electricity than other bulbs, have extremely long lifespans, produce little heat, do not emit UV or infrared, contain no mercury, are resistant to shock and vibration, and can operate effectively in extremely cold environments. Using an LED can improve your lighting while bettering your life overall. 
LED bulbs based on wattage
The wattage of a light is the amount of energy it takes to produce a certain amount of light. The higher the wattage, the brighter the light, but also the more power it uses. Therefore, a lower wattage will use less power. LED lights can come in 4W, 6W, 10W, 13W, 18W, or more. For comparison purposes, a 4W LED bulb is the same as a 25W standard bulb, and an 18W LED is the same as a 100W standard bulb.
Typically, wattage has no effect on the lifespan of a bulb. LEDs have lower wattages in order to conserve energy but last longer than a standard bulb. Wattage has to do with brightness and the amount of energy it takes to produce that brightness. Since wattage in LEDs is important to consider for brightness purposes, the higher the wattage, the brighter an LED bulb will be. 
Highly rated LED bulb brands
If you want light bulbs that look great and will save you money in the long run, then LEDs are the perfect option for you. Wirecutter, a New York Times Company for reviews, suggests Cree’s Exceptional Light Quality line of A19 bulbs for their long-lasting quality and energy-saving feature. The Cree bulbs also function well with dimmer switches because they won’t flicker or buzz. Their coloring is also very accurate. It can bring out the perfect ambiance for your home. These bulbs are available in 60W and 40W.

Read more
An honest review of Brunt Workwear boots and pants
brunt workwear review

Workwear tends to be overlooked. Most companies – even the most popular ones – offer thicker material and call it “durable.” Brunt takes a different approach.

Rather than make heavy-duty clothing, Brunt puts thought and effort behind its product. The question is whether those products are better than the competition.

Read more