What you need to know to buy Baoding Balls

You would like to buy Baoding balls for yourself or as a present? But you feel overwhelmed by the vast number of Baoding balls available?

Well, then you are just at the right place: I will talk you through the most important criteria to choose the right Baoding balls and show you some balls which could be just right for you!

First you need to know: there are many names for those Baoding balls. In fact, only balls produced in the city of Baoding, China, should be called Baoding balls! So they are also called Chinese balls, Chinese stress balls, Chinese exercise balls, Chinese therapy balls, harmony balls, meditation balls, iron balls, Qi Gong balls, marble balls etc. Confusing, right?

So let’s find out more about all these balls. Basically, there are three criteria to distinguish the different Chinese balls:

1. Size of the Baoding balls

The smallest balls have a diameter of 3.0cm (app.1 inch). Use these for children or if you have reaaaaaally small hands. Or if you want to practice with three balls, start with this very small size.

Small balls are coming with a diameter of 4.0-4.5cm (1.5-1.8 Inches). They are meant for beginners and and for small hands. If you are just about to start using Chinese balls, I recommend looking for this size.

The medium-sized balls have a diameter of 5.0cm (app. 2 inches). If you have very large hands you can even use them as a beginner. Or if you already feel comfortable with the smaller balls, you can “upgrade” to this size.

The biggest balls have more than 5.5cm (more than 2 inches) in diameter. A pair can weight more than 500g! They are meant for the most experienced Baoding balls users.

2. Sound

Most of the Chinese stress balls make a chiming sound when you move them in your hands. That is, because there is another ball in each ball plus a spiral. So when you move a ball, the inner ball hits against the outer ball.

In China, they say that these sounds are meant to make you feel more balanced. One ball has a higher tone (which symbolizes Yang) and the other ball a lower tone (representing Yin).

But there are meditation balls which have no sound. Actually, I prefer those because I do not really like this chiming chinking sound.

Usually those made of marble, jade etc. are without sound. However, I know there are people who really like the sound a lot! Just choose what feels right to you.

(Note: if you want to use them in public or at your work space I recommend you buy Baoding balls without sound!)

3. Design

If you have searched for Baoding balls already, you probably noticed that they come in all kinds of colors and designs. And usually they are packed in a small box.

Typical designs are Yin & Yang or something golden Chinese-ish pattern, like a dragon or phoenix. But there are also more puristic balls. Just choose those you like the most. I am sure that you will practice more often with Chinese exercise balls you like to look at than with (in your opinion) “ugly” ones!

So now you know the main criteria to choose the right Baoding balls! And to make it even easier for you, I searched for some Chinese stress balls and sorted them by size. Just click on the image to buy Baoding balls* and start right away!

Very small Baoding Balls (max. 3.5 cm/1.4”)

Small Baoding Balls (app. 4.0cm/1.5”

Medium Baoding Balls app. 4.5 cm/1.8”

Medium-sized Baoding Balls (app. 5.0 cm/2”)

Big Baoding Balls (more than 5.5cm/more than 2”)

Wow, that is really a vast variety of Chinese stress balls! But now you know how to buy Baoding balls and there are many more to discover on Amazon*. I hope you just find the right ones for you and practice a lot! Use them during meditation or while you are watching TV.

If you want to know more about Chinese balls (or if you want to top a present with a book), have a look at this one: The Complete Book of Chinese Health Balls*.

Happy Qi!


P.S.: I also found these really great wooden stars:


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