The physio or iso ball or the Swiss ball has made inroads into almost every strength training program in every sport. While the concept of the ball training has the benefit of increased balance, improved core strength at a lower intensity. For the untrained person just starting, these are all true. For the more seasoned athlete, the benefits are gained in 2-3 weeks of training, learned and do not produce a higher level of performance.
Check out this post by Paul Rogers, a former Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Australian National Sprint Cycling Team. For his team, he did not see any benefits of the Swiss ball during the time his team used the ball training method.
So what does this mean, If you are looking to improve your performance on the bike, simply add other training methods to supplement the swiss ball. Do not make it the only method of training used during off-bike workouts over a long period of time.
Some examples of other training methods include:
- Dumbbell training on two feet
- Dumbbell training on one foot
- Bodyweight training
- Olympic lifts
Realize that when looking to increase your performance, you must increase the stress you are placing on the body. The ball does not provide enough stress to gain the benefits you desire. Therefore, supplement your training with the mentioned methods and you will see better numbers from your investment.