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Updated Mar 8, 2022 12:32 PM

The best exercise balls can be a valuable addition to your home gym. They let you target the core muscles in ways that a traditional floor routine can’t. Exercise balls can also be used in the office to strengthen the abs and build stability, or even as a comfortable seating alternative during pregnancy or childbirth. 

Exercise balls are made in different sizes and thicknesses and may come with additional accessories. However, the most important factor is size. A ball that’s too small or large can make it impossible to maintain correct form, reducing the fitness benefits and increasing the risk of injury. Take a look at our top picks along with tips to make sure you get the best exercise ball for your height and fitness goals. 

How We Picked the Best Exercise Balls

Methodology

The products on our list were selected based on a number of different criteria. We considered performance history based on user reviews, and we looked into the materials and construction process of each exercise ball. Brand reputations also played a role, as we determined the long-term durability of each model and the customer service provided for defective models or customer dissatisfaction. 

  • Materials: PVC, a plastic, is the most common material, but the quality and thickness were taken into account to determine potential durability. 
  • Size options: People come in all heights. A model that comes in more sizes can help users make sure they get a good fit. 
  • Texture: Texture helps users keep the ball under control during use, preventing injury. 
  • Durability: Durability comes back to materials and construction. Thick PVC with plugs that fit well offer more stability and less chance of punctures or deflating. 
  • Accessories: Accessories can enhance and expand the ways users exercise with the ball. Accessories can also make maintenance easier, as in the case of plug removers. 

The Best Exercise Balls: Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall: URBNFit Exercise Ball

Best Overall

The URBNFit is made of durable PVC and comes in ten colors and five sizes. URBNFit

Why It Made The Cut: A maximum weight capacity of 600 pounds, durable PVC, and plentiful size and color options make the URBNFit Exercise Ball our top choice. 

Specs:

  • Available sizes: 45, 55, 65, 75, 85 cm.
  • Colors: 10
  • Maximum weight capacity: 600 pounds

Pros:

  • 5 sizes
  • 10 colors
  • Thick, anti-burst PVC
  • Textured, anti-slip surface

Cons: 

  • Runs small
  • Can be difficult to inflate

The URBNFit Exercise Ball is made of a highly durable, anti-burst PVC that holds air well over time, even with regular use. A textured surface helps users maintain control and stability while using the ball. This model comes in ten colors, providing more options to accentuate your home gym space than many other exercise balls. 

The URBNFit comes in five sizes — 45, 55, 65, 75, and 85 cm. However, it can run on the small side. If you’re deciding between two sizes, pick the larger size to make sure the ball will fit your frame. On the downside, the URBNFit comes with a dual-action pump that can be slow to inflate in some cases. 

Best Extra Large: Live Infinity Exercise Ball

Best Extra Large

This model’s extra-large size option also includes extra-thick materials and a 2,200-pound maximum weight capacity. Live Infinitely

Why It Made The Cut: The Live Infinity comes in a 95 cm size that’s not found among many brands, and it’s combined with thick material and a high maximum weight capacity that makes it the best extra-large exercise ball. 

Specs:

  • Available sizes: 55, 65, 75, 85, 95 cm.
  • Colors: 8
  • Maximum weight capacity: 2,200 pounds

Pros:

  • Thick, textured PVC
  • 2,200 maximum weight capacity
  • Comes in 85 cm and 95 cm sizes
  • Includes accessory tools

Cons: 

  • Requires unique inflation instructions

The Live Infinity Exercise Ball is made of an extra-thick, textured PVC that resists bursting and punctures. It’s made in five sizes, but it’s the 85-cm. and 95-cm. sizes that qualify as extra-large. They both have a maximum weight capacity of 2,200 pounds. At those sizes (and the high maximum weight capacity), people over 6 feet, 7 inches tall can comfortably use this model.

The Live Infinity comes with a few extra accessories worth noting: two air plugs, a pump, and a valve remover tool to deflate the ball. The company also provides online exercise guides to help users develop their form and skills. 

The inflation process is where some users run into trouble. Users must partially inflate the ball, then inflate it some more after the PVC has had time to rest. In some cases, the inflation process gave the ball an oblong shape. 

Best with Resistance Bands: MANTRA SPORTS Exercise Ball Chair

Best with Resistance Bands

This exercise ball comes with a wide range of accessories to expand its uses and provide a full-body resistance workout. MANTRA SPORTS

Why It Made The Cut: Added accessories like a stability base, exercise poster, and resistance bands let you get a full-body workout.

Specs:

  • Available sizes: 55, 65, 75 cm.
  • Colors: 3
  • Maximum weight capacity: 650 pounds

Pros:

  • Includes a set of 15-20 pound resistance bands
  • Base provides stability for exercise or for use as a chair
  • Instructive poster

Cons: 

  • Limited size options

The MANTRA SPORTS Exercise Ball Chair comes with an all-inclusive package for a full-body workout, including the ball, stability base, resistance bands, exercise poster, pump, plugs, and plug remover. 

The resistance bands and stability base offer versatile workout choices. For example, the base can hold the ball for use as a desk chair, or the resistance bands can attach to it for exercises. The exercise ball can also be used alone for traditional balance and core exercises. The exercise poster makes this a great option for newbies who need some help determining which exercises to do and how to do them. 

The only downside with this model is that it only comes in three sizes, which is somewhat limited if you happen to be shorter or taller than average.

Most Durable: Trideer Extra Thick Yoga Ball

The Trideer’s extra-thick PVC can take intense workouts without losing its shape. Trideer

Why It Made The Cut: The Trideer Extra Thick Yoga Ball’s extra-thick PVC has a 2,200-pound maximum weight capacity to take hard workouts that require the most durability.

Specs:

  • Available sizes: 45, 55, 65, 75, 85 cm.
  • Colors: 6
  • Maximum weight capacity: 2,200 pounds

Pros:

  • Thick, latex-free PVC
  • Honeycomb structure adds burst resistance
  • 2,200-pound maximum weight capacity
  • Non-slip surface

Cons: 

  • Slow to inflate and poor inflation instructions

The Trideer exercise ball is made of an extra-thick, latex-free PVC with a 2,200-pound maximum weight capacity. The PVC’s honeycomb structure adds durability and reduces the risk of deflation. If it does lose air, it loses it slowly, so there’s less risk of bursting. The non-slip surface adds texture, making it easier to do complex exercises. 

There can be issues with the inflation process. The manual pump is slow, and some users find the inflation instructions don’t provide enough information. 

Best Budget: BalanceForm Anti-Burst Exercise Ball

Best Budget

This simple ball comes in five sizes and plenty of colors to get you started on your fitness journey. BalanceFrom

Why It Made The Cut: The BalanceForm has everything most people need from an exercise ball, including a high maximum weight capacity, size options, and an affordable price. 

Specs:

  • Available sizes: 45, 55, 65, 75, 85 cm.
  • Colors: 7
  • Maximum weight capacity: 2,000 pounds

Pros:

  • 5 size options
  • High maximum weight capacity
  • Measuring tape, plugs, and plug removers included

Cons: 

  • May require more maintenance than other exercise balls

The BalanceForm Anti-Burst Exercise Ball comes in five sizes and seven colors. Despite the affordable price, it has a high 2,000 maximum weight capacity, increasing the overall durability. 

The foot pump, hose, measuring tape, plugs, and plug removers help you get it to the right size, though it does require following specific inflation instructions. For example, the ball should only be inflated 80 percent then left for a time before reaching the fully inflated size. If the instructions aren’t followed, there can be issues with size and fit for the user. 

Finally, some users find that this model requires frequent refilling, making daily maintenance more of an issue than with other exercise balls.

Things to Consider When Buying the Best Exercise Ball

Size

Use your height to pick the right exercise ball for you. When you sit on the ball, you want your knees to be at about a 90-degree angle. Many companies provide a size chart to help you determine the right size. Some use centimeters while others use inches, so be prepared to do conversion based on which system you use. 

Exercise balls come in different thicknesses and firmnesses that can affect the “fit” of the ball for the user. Always check the manufacturer’s size chart if one is included. However, you can use the following measurements to pick the right size  exercise ball if a size chart isn’t provided:

  • 18 inches/45 centimeters: 4’10” and below
  • 21 inches/55 centimeters: 4’11”-5’4”
  • 25 inches/65 centimeters: 5’5”-5’11”
  • 29 inches/75 centimeters: 6’-6’7”
  • 33 inches/85 centimeters: 6’8” and above

Durability, Thickness, and Texture

Most exercise balls are made of PVC or similar material, and they vary in thickness. Thicker balls offer better durability, but they’re usually more expensive and can be difficult to inflate. All exercise balls, no matter the material and thickness, should resist punctures to some extent. However, make sure to remove any sharp objects from your exercise area before using the ball. 

The exercise ball may also have a texture to provide traction. You may be doing inverted (upside down) moves or yoga balance poses that take the feet or hands off the floor. A ball that slips can be dangerous. Textures may include lines or nodules that provide grip and help you and the ball stay in position. 

Accessories

Some exercise balls come with additional accessories like stability stands or resistance bands. If you want to use the ball while working at a desk, a stand will prevent the ball from rolling when you step away from your desk. Resistance bands and other exercise equipment can expand the ways you use the exercise ball, giving you more ways to challenge your muscles with a single piece of equipment. 

FAQs

Q: How do I know what size exercise ball to get?

Your height determines the size of the exercise ball that will fit you best. Most companies provide a size chart to make sure you get a size that works for your height. See the chart above if the company doesn’t provide its own size chart. 

Q: What’s the difference between a yoga ball and an exercise ball?

There isn’t a difference between a yoga ball and an exercise ball. The difference is in how they’re used. Yoga balls are used to enhance yoga practice and help the user hold certain yoga poses. An exercise ball is used for core exercises, weightlifting, and a wider variety of exercise routines. 

Q: Why is it good to sit on an exercise ball?

Sitting on an exercise ball activates the core muscles, which include the abs, glutes, lower back, and hips, to maintain correct posture. That can strengthen the core and increase your stability. In some cases, sitting on the ball can also increase the number of calories you burn. However, be careful when using the ball as a chair, as poor form or lack of stability can potentially injure the back, shoulders, or wrists.

Final Thoughts

The URBNFit Exercise Ball gets the top spot for its balance of size and color options with the quality of the materials and construction. This ball consistently performs well with regular use. If you’re on a budget, the BalanceForm Anti-Burst Exercise Ball comes at a more affordable price but still resists punctures and can take regular use. These exercise balls make a great addition to a home gym for targeting your problem areas and intensifying your workouts.

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