Do your kids have extra energy to spare? Mine does, and I’m always amazed at how he can literally run all day long and still fidget at the dinner table or while he’s doing homework. Even my teenage daughter finds herself tapping her feet under her desk or knocking her pen on the table. But now, thanks to FluidStance, they are burning extra energy with The Grade!
About The Grade
The Grade’s goal is to get kids moving, and these fun balance boards keep kids active during normally sedentary time – when they’re gaming, cruising social media, watching tv, reading, eating and more. They’re a great way for kids to expend extra energy (which can seem boundless) and avoid long bouts of inactivity, and are a must-have for those particularly wiggly and fidgety kids that have trouble staying still.
It’s been found that younger people who spend excessive time in sedentary behaviors are more likely to have lower academic achievement, poorer motor skills, and lower quality of life. As we all know, the rise in sedentary behaviors like gaming and social media has led to more inactivity – one study found that kids spend 85% of their awake hours sitting. Yet there’s a growing body of research showing that movement helps kids focus more clearly and improve their attention spans. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends at least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity a day for children ages 5-17. Unsurprisingly, the CDC found that 2 out of 3 kids don’t meet these recommendations.
The Grade is here to help! It increases heart rate by 17% over sitting, and gets kids up and moving without sacrificing their favorite activities. They just step on the board, and the subtle motion underfoot keeps them balanced and moving, without distracting them from the task at hand.
When I first unboxed The Grade from FluidStance, I thought it was a training board for skate or snow boarding activities. I suppose they may use the same muscle groups, but it’s really meant for more than that. This is made for the kid who fidgets constantly, the teenager who tends to sit all weekend long, or even for the kid who has trouble keeping their focus during homework and study time.
By forcing their body to keep balance even though they are standing on a rounded bottom board, they are using energy and increasing their heart rate without breaking a real sweat. Instead of shaking a foot under the table or tapping a pen while studying their vocab words, the kids can stand on The Grade board (which comes in 4 awesome colors) while still working on their tasks and burning extra energy. This could be homework, studying for a test, doing dishes, or even while watching TV or playing a video game.
Keeping their balance doesn’t necessarily require active attention but it still makes their little bodies stay active enough so they don’t fall over (hopefully). Since I’ve threatened to hook up the video game console to an exercise bike, they have gladly started using The Grade quite often! It’s fun to catch them jamming to their music on their headphones while staying balanced on their board.
I definitely suggest using these on hardwood floors or even getting a plastic chair mat because they can be harder for the younger crowds to use on plush carpet. And there is a small learning curve but it didn’t take any of my children to get the hang of burning extra energy with The Grade.
I think these are a great idea for any learning environment, especially with considering how distracting a child’s fidgeting, wiggling, or other energy outlets can be to others around them.
The Grade reflects our continued commitment to sustainability. Its materials are composed of post-consumer recycled plastics like milk jugs for the base, as well as recycled rubber tires for the top deck. And, nearly the entire product can be recycled, reducing landfill over time. Good for your kids and for the planet!
The Grade is the child’s version of The Deck, also from FluidStance. They can support up to 125 pounds and they are made in the U.S.A. Whether you are buying one for your own child or you buy several for the classroom, be sure to check out all of their options for burning extra energy on the website featuring The Grade balance board from FluidStance.
We’ve added The Grade to our MEGA Christmas Gift Guide! Check it out here!