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Today exericse or Swiss balls are everywhere. When I worked at Wellness Professionals in Murrieta, our whole open space was filled with balls, almost like walking through a field of mushrooms. Pacific Distributing sold them (and still does) right off the floor sometimes. My favorite stretch is arching back over them to open the chest and stretch the upper back. I like to start classes with a quiet time to allow students to lie on their backs, resting on two tennis balls, to discover where they are holding tension. Another thing we do in yoga class is lie on the floor and “throw” the large balls to each other using our feet. This is an excellent way to strengthen the abdomen, hips and especially inner thighs, and it is a lot of fun. We use them to balance on, and use them for crunches. They are great for resting our legs on at the end of class, and for releasing our lower backs. I also use smaller balls for rolling on to massage the muscles. Today Yamuna Body Rolling is becoming popular as it is a fun and fascinating way to massage/stretch the whole body. Some people put the large balls in a frame for an ergonomically correct chair that forces you to stay straight to keep your balance, at the same time strengthening your core muscles. It is very comfortable to rest your tired legs on a large ball when seated in a chair. I used to sit on a large ball when my daughter was an infant to bounce her. Whenever I get a Living Arts catalogue in the mail, there is always something new that I have not tried yet. I need to get on the ball with that!


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