We know that business travel can be physically stressful and demanding in many ways: squeezing into an airline seat for several hours, hunching over to work on our laptops and tablets, walking trade show floors all day with a canvas bag hanging over our shoulders, maneuvering ourselves through crowded hallways between sessions or making our way through busy streets in cities. And these are just a few examples.

Courtesy image

BJ Dowlen demonstrates how to use the BodyworksBall.
(courtesy image)

Gym and spa time is one way to combat this. However, that also takes concentrated periods of time. An event that includes a quick 10-minute chair massage is always appreciated. But I recently received a BodyworksBall to check out its wellness benefits.

What is a BodyworksBall?

A BodyworksBall is very simple: It’s a rubber ball that is strung through a rope with one handle. It works on your back and feet. But the size and density of this ball is what makes it do its job effectively, according to BJ Dowlen, a sports performance therapist and founder/president of Bodyworks Enterprises, LLC in Brick, NJ, who developed it (patent pending).

As the package says, just grab a ball, find a wall and get rolling.

The basic idea is to take a quick break — just a minute — and use the ball to work through those sore and tight muscles. So, you toss the ball to the left or right side of your back (avoid the spine) and depending on whether you want to target your upper or lower back muscles, you choose a spot and then begin to do some squats as you lean up against a wall. If you have long hair, you’ll want to move it to the opposite side so the ball doesn’t get tangled in it.

Another use is for your feet. Again, just grab the handle and then roll the ball along your foot (I find that my bare foot was better than using my socks, but both are fine).

Whether you’re using it for your feet or back, make sure you equally balance each side.

The Verdict?

The BodyworksBall is also gaining expanded attention: Inc. Magazine recently released its 2014 Best in Design Awards, and the BodyworksBall was a runner up in the new office technology category.

You should get the hang of how to use Bodyworks Ball in a few seconds. Then, you control the amount of pressure and find the spots that you want to target. I have to admit that it feels a bit like you’re getting a long and kneading massage stroke. It’s totally worth it.

The ball does not leave any marks on walls, so you can feel comfortable that you don’t have to worry about any damage to any walls (e.g., your hotel, conference room). For business travelers, this is a good item because it’s very lightweight and compact.

Of course, you don’t have to travel for work to use this. Dowlen recommends that people consider getting up from their desks each hour to move for a couple minutes — a concept that is also recommended by advocates of worksite wellness. The BodyworksBall can be used to stretch and reduce the kinks that build up all day.

You can find instructions about how to use the BodyworksBall on its website, but the package also includes important safety information which is useful. And their contact details are available for you if you have questions (made in the USA).

Have you tried Bodyworks Ball? Share your comments with us.