A good gymnast’s home may include a large number of tools and pieces of equipment, but one of the most practical pieces of gymnastics equipment for at-home practice is the balance beam.
As fitness equipment goes, balance beams are affordable, fairly easy to install, and easy to use for beginners as well as advanced gymnasts. The main question is where to buy a balance beam and what should be taken into consideration?
When shopping for the perfect balance beam, it is important to consider the gymnast’s abilities as well as the space where the beam will be installed– in order to prevent injury and maximize use, the beam in question must meet both of these needs.
Here is a summary of the main types of balance beams on the market today
The Beam Mat
For very young children– ages seven or younger– and beginning gymnasts, the beam mat is the safest and most affordable option. This piece of equipment is a mat with a wide line down the middle which looks like a beam. Because there is no height to this product, it maximizes safety while allowing young children to work with the concept of the beam.
Children can be taught to walk or cartwheel along the beam without injuring themselves. Though this product is designed mostly for young children, it can be a practical, affordable option for older children and adults who have a lower fitness level or who have never practiced gymnastics before.
The Floor Beam
Floor beams are a step up from beam mats– they have some height to them, but they sit flush against the floor. In addition, floor beams are compact and easy to fold, which makes them highly portable. This ease of transport makes them ideal for gymnasts who travel or wish to practice outdoors.
The Gymnastics Beam
Varying from eight to sixteen feet length, the gymnastics beam is reserved for older children and more experienced gymnasts. Eight foot beams are useful for the vast majority of intermediate gymnasts– they provide adequate space to practice cartwheels, handstands and walkovers while being compact enough to fit into the average home gym.
Twelve-foot beams provide yet more space as the gymnast’s skills improve, but competition beams are sixteen feet long– this makes the sixteen-foot option ideal for advanced gymnasts and anyone who needs more space to practice advanced gymnastics skills. The longer balance beam is great for building confidence before a competition.
Where can you actually buy a balance beam?
Once you have an idea of what you are looking for, you can begin searching. The question of where to buy a balance beam depends largely on what you are looking for. The following is an overview of your three options: online stores, physical stores, and of course, Amazon.
Because balance beams are considered standard gymnastics equipment, most online gymnastics supply websites will offer a wide variety of balance beams for almost any budget. Some popular sites where you can purchase balance beams are Gym Supply and Gymnastics Bars and Beams.
Used balance beams can often be found at a discount on websites like eBay and Craigslist, though the quality varies dramatically from item to item. As with all online shopping, it is important to make sure that the seller is reliable before purchasing a used product.
Some websites also allow customers to customize their own balance beams. This option can be costly, but for individuals who are dedicated to the sport and plan to continue practicing for years to come, it may be more cost-effective in the long run. Stick It!
Balance Beam is one website that offers custom ‘combo sets’, enabling customers to put together a package consisting of the colors and beam heights of their choosing.
While online sports supply stores often offer a variety of balance beams, Amazon is a great option where to buy a balance beam. It is very useful for anyone looking to compare specific products and search for the lowest price. This may also be the best option for anyone who has invested in Amazon Prime, which can provide discounts and free shipping. Here is a list of some of the most popular balance beams available on Amazon:
* Read what customers say about this beam *
Designed for children, this highly compact balance beam is four feet long and four inches high, with a four-inch-wide top that widens down to an eight-inch base. The top is designed to hold the same look and feel as a competition beam, both in width and in material. This product was designed for beginners and is highly affordable.
This eight-foot balance beam is constructed out of wood, but with a padded top and suede covering. It is four inches wide– competition width– and comes with twelve-inch steel risers.
* Read what customers say about this beam *
This beam is eight feet long, seven inches high, and four inches wide. It is made out of wood with a synthetic (vegan) suede wrapping, and features the same type of padding found in competition beams. The support pieces are twelve inches wide.
Before online shopping, the main way to purchase anything was to visit a physical store and buy something off the shelf or place an order. Most sporting goods stores will have some selection of balance beams available, but for the highest quality products and the best advice, it is wise to look for a center that specializes in gymnastics supplies.
To sum it up
Where to buy a balance beam: online or offline? There are many places you can go to purchase a balance beam. The great thing about shopping online is the ease of comparison. It is far easier to compare the prices/values of two items in online stores than it may be to compare the costs of products sold in physical sports equipment stores.
For savvy shoppers who already know exactly what they want, Amazon may be the most efficient and affordable means of tracking down the perfect piece of equipment. For individuals who want guidance in selecting the perfect balance beam, visiting a gymnastics supply center where you can find experts who sell a wide variety of products may be the best option.