Product Review: FitBall Seating Disc

The average person sits 56 hours a week, leading to sitting fatigue, chronic pain and poor posture. Wiggle your way to better health with the FitBall Seating Disc.

FitBall SeatingDisc

On December 11, 2009, Fox News reported on a study which stated the average American spends 56 hours a week sitting. In Sitting Too Much?, Seline Yager states that oversitting has detrimental effects, from obesity to heart disease, and from diabetes to chronic pain stemming from improper posture.

Active sitting involves constantly adjusting your body position while seated. Fitterfirst, a manufacturer and supplier of active seating devises, state the benefits as being:

  • improved core stability
  • mild exercise (burn up to 350 calories a day from active sitting)
  • ergonomic seating
  • improved balance
  • improved body posture and spinal alignment
  • increased blood flow
  • decreased stiffness
  • pain relief

Who Can Use the FitBall Seating Disc

Anyone who sits for long periods of time will benefit from using the FitBall Seating Disc, from office workers to truck drivers, from musicians to painters and from students to seniors. People who wish to improve their posture can use the FitBall Seating Disc.

In "Effects of Stability Balls on Behavior and Achievement in the Special Education Classroom", Action Research Project (May 2008) by Victoria N. Bill, Master of Science in Special Education, she concludes that students with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) benefited from using an active seating device. Active sitting improves their alertness, attention and focus.

Warnings about Using the FitBall Seating Disc

People with poor balance should consult with a medical professional first prior to using the FitBall Seating Disc. Those who have recently had back surgery should get a medical professional's recommendation on the best active seating device for their condition. Finally, improper usage and posture on the disc can negate the benefits of active sitting and hurt your body.

FitBall Seating Disc Features

Think of the FitBall Seating Disc as a miniature fitness ball that can be placed on any office chair or task chair. The FitBall SeatingDisc is 15" in diameter and made of PVC. One side is smooth while the other side has sensory bumps. To inflate, use an air raft or air mattress pump. For increased instability, fill the FitBall Seating Disc with more air.

There is also a 13" FitBall Seating Disc Jr. for children. Optional sitting disc covers are also available. To clean, simply wipe down with soap and water.

FitBall Seating Disc Uses

  1. Ease back pain, correct body posture and engage in active sitting by using the FitBall Seating Disc as an Active Sitting Cushion. Place on your seat and your body will take care of the rest. Your body will automatically adjust to healthy sitting posture. Make sure your feet are firmly planted on the floor as you will be continually swaying, wiggling and bouncing to maintain core stability. Place on the floor to work your legs and feet.
  2. Improve your sense of balance by using the FitBall Seating Disc to make your ground unstable. Place on the floor and the disc becomes a Balance Training Tool to use for standing and sitting balance exercises.
  3. The FitBall Disc can be used as a general training aid. It can Increase the level of difficulty of any standard exercise, e.g. stomach crunches, lunges

User Testing and Assessment of the FitBall Seating Disc

I purchased the FitBall Seating Disc to use when teaching piano. It is the largest of the three active sitting devices in my studio and the least portable. I would have preferred a different colour to create a "cushion rainbow" but it only comes in one colour. The bumpy side gives you a bit of a massage when used.I fell off my drum throne three times when using the Seating Disc. Unfortunately, the disc is 2" wider than the seat. Then, I moved it to a "normal" wooden chair with a back. When demonstrating at the piano, I have no problems with it. When sitting to listen to a student play, my bad habits return - leaning back and slouching so my feet can touch the floor or sitting with one foot on the seat while dangling the other since I can't touch the floor seated that way.

My three fidgety students used the disc as a foot cushion while using the FitBall Wedge as a seat cushion. Their feet didn't wander up and down keyboard stands, piano legs or wind up in the wastebasket as much when using the disc. Partway through a song, they simply stood on the cushion, shifting their weight in time to the music. This was the most successful application of the disc.

Fitter USA and Ball Dynamics International

The FitBall Seating Disc is manufactured by Fitter USA, part of Ball Dynamics International, LLC. BDI sells a variety of active sitting, resistance training, balance training aids and equipment.

It is a popular item on Amazon, ranking in the Top 40 of Amazon Best Sellers for Balance Trainers. For more information, read Exercise Ball Moves to the Office,and Product Review: FitBall Seating Wedge.

The FitBall Seating Disc is an affordable back pain remedy that fosters active sitting, core stability and posture correction. It is fun but use with care.