How to choose your ball
It is essential to have a ball of the appropriate size for your weight and the length of your segments. To ensure the right size of your ball, with your legs aligned with your hips, feet flat on the ground, knees above the heels, make sure the tibiofemoral (leg-thigh) angle is a right angle.
There are 45, 55, 65 and 75 cm high balls on the market. It is important to inflate the ball and respect its recommended height. To measure the height of the ball, place it by a wall, place a ruler on top of the inflated ball and mark the wall at this height with a pen. Afterwards, measure from the ground to the mark. Then, if necessary, slightly deflate it to reach the appropriate height.
There are various grades of balls. For pregnancy and delivery, make sure that your ball is burst-proof and that it can withstand 300kg of pressure. Safety is essential during the perinatal period; therefore, you should not skimp on the quality of your ball. In addition, it will serve you well beyond your pregnancy and delivery. We recommend the Gymnic Classic Plus exercise ball.
Balls at all times
It is through practice that we develop fluency, skills, confidence and complicity with the ball. Get used to sit on the ball in front of the television, while talking over the phone, to read, write, use the computer… The ball is a precious tool; it allows you to release accumulated stress. The ball is recommended to improve your daily well-being.
Set-up your space
- Set-up a nice area, free of everything, of around 2 square meters
- Wear light and stretch clothes
- Non-slip shoes or bare-foot, depending on your surface
Being comfortable will help you keep your balance
Sitting on the ball with your legs open, feet flat and solid:
- Rock backwards to stretch your back, push gently with your feet and exhale before coming back slowly.
- Repeat the movement by rocking from side to side.
- Then make circles clockwise and counter clockwise, exhale during the exercise and slowly come back to the starting position.
Take your time; this is not a race. Repeat several times. Feel what you are doing to control your ball in all positions. These movements release tension, heaviness and activate blood circulation. It is also important to breathe well during these exercises. Exhaling during effort is a simple and efficient mean to develop conscious breathing.
It is impressive to see how many different movements can be performed with the ball during pregnancy and a wide range of movements can be performed as a couple during labour. Get informed, specialists are there to guide you.
A ball or a pill?
Dear mom, offer your baby what is most natural, choose the ball over epidural or pills. This is an excellent choice that you can make for you and your baby. Daddy will support you in this choice because he is happy to be able to contribute to your well-being during this period by comforting you on the ball and massaging you adequately to stimulate the production of endorphins, this natural anaesthetic that makes delivery easier.
The ball gives you support points and positions where gravity is dominant which shortens the duration of labour. The effect of weightlessness felt is also enjoyable and beneficial. Some movements improve the passage of the baby in the perineum and reduce the risk of tearing or the necessity to perform episiotomy. The use of a birth ball during labour reduces the rate of C-section. The birth ball used during childbirth activates labour, minimizes pain and prepares you to give birth more naturally.
“Keep rocking, mom, remember that I love this activity. It makes me feel good, it relaxes me and calms me, as it does you. I love the waves in the amniotic liquid. I feel like on a sailboat rocking to the rhythm of your breathing. This is just great!”