Loathe the Bosu? Help Is on the Way!

Amy Kuras

balanced rocksAs I've written before, I am a big old klutzy klutz. I mean I trip on my own feet. So I watch the people standing ramrod straight on Bosus at the gym and calmly lifting weights or wielding medicine balls with great envy. I'd keel over, probably injuring myself or others in the process.

A new piece of exercise equipment claims to blend the cardio-boosting effects of the step with the balance effects of the Bosu. It's called the Step 360, and Gaiam plans to debut it this fall at gyms, with infomercials to follow and finally mass availability next year.

It was developed by entrepreneur and karate enthusiast John Cole. He wanted something to help boost his balance while practicing standing on one leg and kicking with the other. He glued two inner tubes together and attached a plywood board to the top, and the Step 360 was born. Gaiam gussied it up with inner chambers that can be inflated or deflated to provide more or less stability, and a cushioned top.

The wobble provided by the inner tubes force your core muscles to engage, while the flat top mimics solid ground. It's apparently easier to maintain proper form than it is on the Bosu, but still challenging.

Balance training is getting more popular, partially because as people age their balance suffers and that can lead to injuries, but also because balance exercises are a great way to work your core muscles. Since I've got such awful balance, I would love something like this that forces me to improve but probably won't result in a broken arm.

Would you use a Step 360, or do you love your Bosu?

Image via Earl McGehee/Flickr

Read More