Gear Review: Indo Board Balance

By JILL ADLER

‘Take some time on it,’ the Indo Board Balance Trainer rep said. ‘Soon you’ll be drinking a cup of hot coffee without spilling.’ Did he understand to whom he was speaking? This is the girl who fails those DUI roadside sobriety tests with honors — and I don’t drink (ok, I don’t drink and drive). I have great dynamic balance but when it comes to standing on one leg and counting down from 100, fail me now.

I stepped onto the elliptical wooden board with the knobby, inflated IndoFlo cushion underneath and attempted to keep the board parallel to the floor. In three seconds, my arms flailed and I flew off the thing and into the sales rep. I felt lame, and I wasn’t surprised.

The original Indo Board comes with a roller so you swivel back and forth. That device was beyond my realm. But this model, which has a mouth-inflatable cushion instead of the roller, was made to help beginners condition their core and build balance without the danger of rolling off the edge of the board. I brought the board home, determined to conquer the swishy demon.

Indoboard.jpg

Indo Board Balance

Through minute adjustments with my legs, feet, arms, and abs — with eyes looking ahead to the horizon — plus a lot of diligent practice, I began to comfortably stand on the board. After a few weeks of off and on training, I felt my balance improving along with the muscle tone in my inner thighs and glutes. Imagine your body position surfing a curl, or skiing or boarding a steep chute. That’s what it’s like. The Indo is an effective trainer for any aggressive athlete. And who knows, it just might help me “win” my next roadside sobriety test.

Details: $124 for the deck, roller and cushion. 321.777.6021, www.indoboard.com.

—Based in Park City, Utah, Jill Adler covers skiing, adventure sports, hiking, and adventure travel for online and print publications including Sunset, SkiPress, and Salt Lake magazines, FuelTV, MSN.com, and she is the associate editor for OnTheSnow.com. She is also a broadcaster, actor, and a Level III certified ski instructor.

Posted by Larry - 12/15/2009 10:56 AM

I’ve used a bongo board for many years – and they are really great at helping you develop balance. What they don’t help as much with is with lateral strength. Don’t get me wrong – some lateral strength is built using one. However, the limit is the range of motion. I like my ProSki Simulator Link Text because it is VERY stable (even for my youngest kids (5)and oldest in-laws (76). Plus it gives me a better workout than a bongo board ever could, because of the wider range of motion. It isn’t in the same cost range at all, but I consider it my “step up investment” in my long-term skiing abilities. It is a fantastic all-year tool that I’ve enjoyed using, with the added benefit that it keeps my legs, knees and hips very strong.

Posted by CHUCK - 05/23/2010 12:07 AM

I recieved a pro model yesterday and have really enjoyed using it this evening in short sessions in front of the TV on a thick carpet with a chair in front to give better balance. I have had the basic model for a while but haven’t used that one with the roller very much, mostly only with the easier flo pad. It’s rather like using a skateboard or a carveboard to crosstrain for surfing, but even more convenient since you can do it indoors at a moments notice with no prep time, cleanup or travel, just an immediate magic-carpet ride! I’m ordering a third board, the pretty Bamboo Beach model, and taking the extra board to leave at work! Try it, you’ll lime it!

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