"Every year I attend a fitness conference looking for new ideas to motivate clients to higher fitness achievements.  Last year I signed myself up for the Bender Ball certification course not knowing what to expect.  As I entered the room a feeling of doubt washed over me, as I knew I had invested quite a bit of time and money in this course and was unsure of the benefits this little ball would actually provide.  To my relief, half way through the course, the whole class was experimenting with many different exercises, which could be incorporated into routines to help participants gain core strength.  What struck me the most about his little ball was the fact that it would enable clients who had back issues to perform abdominal work without putting undue stress on their backs.  

The Bender Ball was developed by Leslie Bender who is an International presenter and Master trainer.  For 8 years, Leslie had been working hard trying to discover new and effective ways to train the core.  “Selective Stabilization” methods use balance to work all the abdominal muscles.  Meaning, this method allows you to relax muscles not involved in abdominal strengthening so your abdominal muscles can work harder.  Our society has gone cardio crazy and has forgotten the benefits of training core muscles, which are the foundation for all movements including those movements, which help keep our posture healthy.  Without strong core muscles, your extremities have to work twice as hard to accommodate for the core’s weakness, therefore putting undue stress on them.

 The Bender Ball will generate 4 times the work in an abdominal crunch per second of exercise.  In a regular crunch there is no extension but with the Bender Ball behind your lumbar region the degree from flexion to extension is increased from 50 to 90 degrees which is 408% more effective to be exact!  This amount of work cannot be accomplished with standard floor crunches or with the Swiss Ball due to its larger diameter and size, thereby giving the Bender Ball a significant advantage in working the muscles harder and at a better range of motion.  

The Bender Ball is soft enough, about 9 inches in diameter and can be tucked under the tailbone to perform those exercises with legs moving up and down parallel to the floor without flexing your back.  Before this invention, clients with back issues could not perform such exercises due to the arching of the back and the stress it caused.  The ball is can withstand 300 lbs of weight and can be used for not only abdominal exercises but for a full body workout Pilates style and cardio training.  

I have been working with the Bender Ball for a year now and can attest to the fact that it works the core in a dynamic and safe way.  I believe in it so much that I invested in 35 balls!  There are many fitness gimmicks out there and it takes wisdom to weed through them and find out what works and what doesn’t.  The Bender Ball really works! It really is the little ball that does it all!"

Janice Burdon is a McGill University & Can Fit Pro certified fitness specialist with 16 years of experience as a fitness instructor