How do I Choose the Best Folding Balance Beam?

Micki Elizabeth

Many gymnasts, children and fitness enthusiasts can benefit from buying a folding balance beam for fun and exercise. This home fitness equipment allows one to improve overall balance techniques or practice balance beam routines outside of the gym. Acquiring and maintaining balance requires dedication and core strength, which may take a good deal of time and work to attain. Many factors should be taken into account when considering buying a folding balance beam, such as safety, the user’s needs, features and ease of use.

Balance, whether on a tightrope or a balance beam, is important for developing coordination and motor skills.
Balance, whether on a tightrope or a balance beam, is important for developing coordination and motor skills.

Though a folding balance beam may be marketed most often toward children, people of all ages and fitness levels can find a use for it. The safety of the balance beam should be of high importance regardless of the intended use; look for beams that are padded sufficiently, have a wide base for stability and boast the absence of exposed staples and other potential hazards. These beams fold in half for portability, so a sturdy locking mechanism may provide added security. Look for these features to steer you toward the safest beam available.

A folding balance beam might be purchased simply for fun, in which case one might look for their favorite color or pattern, as beams are available in a wide variety. Some even come with phrases such as “I love gymnastics” along the side. These are regularly purchased by gymnasts who need a way to practice their routines and try new moves while away from the gym — in this case, the best beam to choose is one with the most similarities to the gymnast’s full-sized balance beam. The length is one important factor to consider, as is the make up of the beam. Look for one with a durable wood core, ample padding and a suede or faux-suede cover akin to beams used in the gym.

Since a folding balance beam is made specifically for use wherever one has ample space, there are a few features one can look for regardless of how she intends to use the beam. Ease of moving the beam will depend on its weight; most are no heavier than 20 pounds (9.1 kg). Many come with a strap by which to carry the equipment, and the length and material of the strap may be a matter of individual preference.

Each person will experience different levels of comfort depending on the folding balance beam she chooses. Thus, a warranty or return policy that allows you to return the beam if it is not to your liking is a feature to look for. If you are purchasing the equipment online, be sure to check customer reviews. They may offer insight and facts about the product that the manufacturer does not mention, which could help in finding the best item for you.

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