5 Simple Ways to Use a Tennis Ball - Some Helpful, Some Not
What is a tennis ball? Tennis balls are made out of rubber, and are often stuffed with neutral gas. As with most sporting equipment, the tennis ball evolved from animal products until 1882 someone got the idea of glueing felt on a rubber ball, and the useful green orb we know today came into being.
So, why are we talking about a tennis ball?
Well, there are many things tennis balls are good for, including:
1. Playing Tennis
This may surprise some of you, but tennis is still being played on the international stage, and is a lovely sport to engage in.
2. Relieving Tension in Your Hamstrings and Gluteal Muscles While Sitting
This is a good way to alleviate discomfort in your hamstrings, glutes, and even low back while sitting at your office. Just sit on the darn thing! Find a spot that feels a bit more sensitive, and the weight of your leg on the ball will cue your muscles to release a bit of that persistent holding of those muscles as we slave away on our computers. Move it throughout the day, and you may be surprised how much fresher you feel jumping off the table.
3. Playing Fetch
Well, yes! There are still few things less pleasurable than feeling the mix of dirt, slobber, and mulch taking a tennis ball back from your pooch at the dog park.
4. Relieving a Headache
You’d be surprised how the power of a tennis ball can multiply when you tape two of them together. We call this a “peanut” around the office. You might be surprised to know that it's the space between the pair allows your spine to sit nicely.
5. Agility Work
I know it seems simple, but by standing a few feet away from a wall and playing toss - with your non-dominant hand if you really want a challenge - you can create a game out of your balance exercise. The closer you get? The harder you throw? The more you’ll challenge your balance circuits! Remember, balance is a SKILL that is learned and practiced much more than a talent, and therefore you should find ways to challenge yourself. Here’s how Wes likes incorporate tennis balls into his balance work:
Want more tips and tricks for using household objects to stay healthy? Or just have questions about how to keep your body running smoothly? Might need something more than a tennis ball? Ask about how we might be able to help keep your body in working order HERE.
**Little known fact: The first game of fetch with a tennis ball was played in the village Hampton-on-Shropshire between a Mr. Gallad Hopferth and his terrier Prospero in the late summer of 1579. His wife, Millicent, attempted to rid him of what she felt was a filthy habit of “leisure sporting” at the local lawn club by pitching his racket, shoes, and tennis ball into their farm pond.
Prospero, an imperturbable Yorkshire Terrier returned the floating green sportball to Mrs. Hopferth repeatedly until, exasperated, she quit and gave up the ball as lost. When Mr. Hopferth returned, finding only his ball remaining, he tossed it down the lane, Prospero once again gave chase, and an entire industry was born.
(Note: Historical veracity of this story is questionable).