Rock-it handcrafted wooden balance boards

Rock-it boards are wooden balance boards for children and adults. Priced from $189, they are handcrafted in New Zealand, come in six different sizes, and last for years.

What is it: Rock-it boards are handcrafted wooden balance boards, used in multiple contexts across all ages. They're available in six different styles and sizes, each designed to meet different needs. They provide a unique, low-impact, rhythmic way to move and exercise and are great for fitness and wellbeing at any age, children's play and balance (engaging body and brain!), enabling dynamic movement in the office or workplace, and even assisting in physical therapy and rehabilitation from injury or surgery.

How it works: The most obvious way to use a rock-it board is to stand on it and rock! But it can also be turned over or on its side and used as a bridge, a rainbow, a hangar for toy aeroplanes, a structure to crawl or walk over, a fortress wall, a balancing platform... Limited only by your child's imagination, rock-it boards give children the opportunity to exercise, move, and engage in pretend play either on their own or with friends. It comes in six different sizes and can be used from the time children crawl right up to adults (depending on weight -- different boards have different weight limits). Brilliant for helping to build balance, flexibility, and core strength. It can also be used after injury or during rehabilitation with your physio or doctor's permission. There's even an office version you can use at a standing desk.

Our editor says: I first learned about rock-it boards after the birth of my third child, when I was looking to regain core strength in a gentle and low-impact way. The first time I stepped on a rock-it board, I felt very surprised at how fun it was! Rocking side-to-side, I learned to widen my stance to work my body harder, and even worked on doing yoga poses on my rock-it board for a deeper workout. The company says it's a great way to "snack" on exercise, and they're right. You can balance on a rock-it board while watching TV or reading a book (yes, I tried that). I loaned my rock-it board to a friend and she used it while folding washing! You can also turn it over and lay on it for an excellent stretch. It's truly versatile and there are videos on the rock-it website to give you more ideas for workouts. For children, the rock-it board is even more fantastic. Our six-year-old reviewer really took to his rock-it board, first turning it over to sit on it to read a book, then hopping over it, then finally rocking on it for ages while singing songs. He even lay down on it with a pillow and blanket to rest later. Our other four-year-old reviewer in a childcare centre see-sawed on her rock-it board with a friend, made it into a doll bed, and drove vehicles over the top of it like a bridge. What we love most about rock-it boards is that they engage a child's body and brain! We think they're a great investment and are particularly good for children, as they'll grow with your child from the time they are small.

Things to remember: Rock-it boards are best used indoors on a carpeted, non-slip surface; but if you have wooden or tile floors, use the board on a yoga mat. You can also use it outdoors on a non-abrasive surface such as dry grass or artificial mat. Different boards have different weight limits, so check what the weight limit is for the board you have chosen (up to 80-150kg depending on the board). If the board is inverted (upside-down like a rainbow shape), the weight limit will be between 20-40kg depending on the board. To care for, clean with a mild eco-friendly cleaner and rub with a Scotch-Brite cleaning pad or similar, then allow to dry and apply a thin coat of Danish oil. Rock-it boards will last for many years if looked after properly.

To find out more: Visit rockitnz.com to view videos of rock-it boards in use and find out what size will suit your family.

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