Let’s face it: modern life is stressful — and that was true before a global pandemic threw the world into chaos. If you’re going to make it through these tough times, you’re going to need one of the best stress balls to get rid of your anger, fear, anxiety and any other emotion you need to remove or express in these hard times.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), anxiety is the most common mental health issue to afflict American adults, affecting more than 40 million people every year. Whether you have a diagnosed anxiety disorder or simply struggle with the stress of daily life, it can be difficult to get through the week when dealing with the overwhelming pressure of bills, deadlines, appointments, errands and familial responsibilities.
While serious mental health concerns should always be addressed by a licensed physician, physical aids, like stress balls, can be helpful in managing minor stress, anger and anxiety that comes up throughout the day. Whether it’s work, school or general life, having a go-to way to shed some of that pent up emotion can certainly get you on the path to feeling good again.
The best stress balls offer a number of potential benefits including:
- Relieving physical tension when squeezing the object, encouraging your muscles to relax
- Offering a distraction to an overactive and anxious mind as you repeatedly squeeze.
- Acting as an attractive desk piece or interesting conversation starter
- Providing a different kind of entertainment and distraction as some pieces are more fidget orientated and complex
So, if you’re looking for an easy anxiety and stress management aid to incorporate into your routine or want a way to distract your mind when things are becoming a little too much, try one of these high-quality stress balls for instant relief.
1. Stress Less Stress Balls
These Stress Less Stress Balls are ideal for stress-filled moments, whether you’re at home, the office or on the move. This three-pack is available in four calming colors, and each one includes one of three inspirational quotes: “Choose happy,” “Life is a journey not a race” and “Live more worry less.” The set includes a handy, three-ball carry case, making it highly portable and easy to store. This is an ideal gift for kids and adults alike and a handy way to alleviate stress and keep busy hands and anxiety at bay.
2. MalechaKnitting Tiny jellyfish Mini Stress Ball
Rather than being built to take abuse and nothing else, these adorable MalechaKnitting Tiny jellyfish Mini Stress Balls offer your brain some mental relief. While you can pummel and squash their crocheted bodies to your heart’s content, it’s hard to stay mad or stressed for too long with one of their super cute, happy faces staring back at you. And their rather small size makes them ideal for carrying in your pockets at all times. However, this lighter approach to stress relief doesn’t work for everyone, so if you’re looking for something to really take a beating, we suggest moving on.
3. Serenilite Firm Gel Star Stress Balls
MOST UNIQUE SHAPE
These Serenilite stress “balls” come in a unique star shape for easy grip. Each star features a firm gel core that retains shape and is covered in a sleek fabric for optimal stress relief and comfort.
4. SamcraftStudio Stressball:Dice D20
BEST FOR NERDS
While not quite as good as actually playing D&D or other dice-based fantasy role-playing games, the SamcraftStudio Stressball:Dice D20 does provide a unique quality in the form of game-like rolling in addition to stress-relieving squeezing. This is particularly beneficial to game lovers who could do with a reminder of the good things in life when cooped up in an office or dealing with real life problems for too long. Plus, the 20-sided dice can be used functionally in games and also comes in a range of different colors.
5. The Friendly Swede Hand Grip Stress Ball
These stress balls are egg shaped to fit comfortably in your hands. Each egg is made of thermoplastic rubber, so they are safe to use and easy to grip. Plus, their rubber design makes these stress balls easier to clean than their fabric-covered counterparts. Best of all, The Friendly Swede stress balls come in three different sizes — extra small, small, and large — so you can find the best size to meet your personal needs.
6. Super Z Outlet Mini Foam Sports Balls
BEST FOR SPORTS FANS
Whether you’re watching a stressful playoff game or your team is down with minutes to go, this pack of Super Z Outlet Mini Foam Sports Balls has an option for every kind of sports fan. Whether it’s soccer, football or baseball, you’ll find a ball-shaped stress ball to take your frustration out. Plus, as there are 24 items included in the pack, you’ll be able to share them with your friends and keep spares at home, the office and everywhere in between.
7. Neliblu Why Worry? Be Happy! Funny Face Stress Balls
BEST BULK BUY
If you spend a lot of time with an office full of stressed out people, consider investing in these Neliblu Why Worry? Be Happy! Funny Face Stress Balls. This 24-pack of bright yellow, smiley-face stress balls is a great way to give your team a way to release their stress and get them back on track. Plus, as well as being squishy, these balls are also bouncy which only adds to the amount of fun possible. You’ll also find they’re the best stress balls for party favors and filling goody bags.
8. Fffresiss Hand Therapy Stress Balls
BEST STRESS BALLS FOR STRENGTHENING
The Fffresiss Hand Therapy Stress Ball Set doesn’t just offer an easy way to let off some stress-related steam, it also lets you train your grip strength at the same time. The set includes three 2.3-inch balls, one soft, one medium and one hard. This allows you to choose exactly how much resistance you want from your ball and, over time, get to a point where you can crush even the hardest one with ease. This versatile set is great for office workers, high-school kids and everyone in between. Furthermore, the set includes a drawstring bag for easy storing and transport of your balls.
9. PILPOC theFube Fidget Cube
If squeezing your anger away doesn’t really work for you and the idea of pushing, pulling, turning and generally distracting your mind sounds more appealing and effective, the PILPOC theFube Fidget Cube could be the answer you’re after. This sturdy, premium ABS plastic cube comes with its own storage case and includes a range of mind-distracting/entertaining parts. These devices range from a joystick and on/off switch to three gears and four buttons, plenty to get your mind somewhere else.
10. PP PHIMOTA Sensory Toys Set
If you’re struggling to pick just one stress ball from this list, why not have them all (almost) with the PP PHIMOTA Sensory Toys Set? This 28-piece set includes several different stress ball styles, from squeezy ones to fidgety ones, and everything in between. From the flip chains and finger massage rings to the stretchy string and squishy stress balls, there really is something for everyone. It’s a great office-wide gift idea, especially when temperaments are rising.
11. StressGrip Stress & Anxiety Relief Device
Although not shaped like a ball, the StressGrip Stress & Anxiety Relief Device still lets you squeeze as hard as you can. And, unlike traditional hand grippers, this smart, advanced device feels comfortable in hand and uses four powerful springs to deliver the resistance you choose (up to 12 pounds). Simply switch between resistances using the adjustable system. Furthermore, the device doubles up as a wrist and hand workout tool which also allows for individual finger workouts if you remove the top cover.
12. StringyBall Stress Ball on a String
This stress ball set is super convenient for travel and everyday use. Each ball comes attached to a flexible cord to wear on your wrist, keeping it secure during use. Keep one attached to your backpack or bag, and store one in your car and work desk for continued access to these easy-to-use anxiety relief aids. The StringyBall stress balls are made with thermoplastic rubber, so they are safe, durable, and the ideal material for tension relief.
13. Brass Statu Marble Baoding Exercise Balls
BEST FOR COORDINATION
Not all stress relief involves taking your anger out on something. In the case of these Brass Statu Marble Baoding Exercise Balls, the practice of turning the balls in the palm of your hand distracts and calms your mind. Not only is this an effective way to deal with stress and anxiety, it’s also a great way to improve your hand coordination. This beautiful set includes two solid marble balls and comes with a handy carry case for easy transport.
14. Koogel Globe Squeeze Stress Balls
BEST FOR TRAVELERS
The Koogel Globe Squeeze Stress Balls offer something interesting to look at as you squeeze, relax and work out your hands. Each one of the 24 three-inch balls included in the pack features a globe design, meaning it’s easy to brush up on your world geography and de-stress at the same time. These boldly colored, educational stress balls are ideal for offices, homes and for kids who love to feel and learn at the same time.
15. TEEGOMO Squishies
For something a little different when it comes to your stress ball choice, try these TEEGOMO Squishies. The pack includes four less-than-ordinary stress “balls” which take the shape of a pizza slice, a waffle, a smoore and coffee. The high-quality pieces sport a squishy composition which is easy to squeeze and slow to rise. These fun pieces are great for stress relief as well as interior decoration and use at kid’s playtime.
16. Vive Therapy Putty
Vive Therapy Putty is an ideal choice for anyone who loves to push, pull, squeeze and constantly feel something between their fingers. This well-reviewed putty is available in a variety of softnesses and comes in three-ounce, resealable tubs for easy portability and storage. As well as stress relief, this versatile putty is great for improving grip strength, dexterity, motor skills and rehabilitation from injury. Additionally, the putty is odorless, latex-free, non-toxic and built to last, meaning it can withstand the rigors of daily abuse for years to come.
17. Stexe Tardigrade Stress Ball
Colloquially known as water bears or moss piglets, tardigrades are simply fascinating. Translate that into a Stexe Tardigrade Stress Ball, and you get an item which can take your anger and frustration when required while stimulating your brain and fascination the rest of the time. So that you can make the most of your unique stress ball and ensure as many people see it as possible, this anxiety aid comes with it’s very own stand, letting you display it front and center.
18. Painted Silicone Axolotl Stress Ball
Another outstanding animal-shaped option is the Painted Silicone Axolotl Stress Ball. These alien-like amphibians provide plenty of grabbing area for taking out your frustration while also offering plenty of intrigue for when things calm down a little. They come in a range of different colors and would also make a great gift idea for animal-loving friends or kids who like things that are just plain weird.
19. Smack a Sack-Stress Relief Ball Sack
While smacking the real thing may cause a lot more harm than good, it’s hard to deny that there’s something particularly stress relieving about taking your frustrations out on the Smack a Sack-Stress Relief Ball Sack. This two-ball set is accompanied by a dual-ball carrying sack, which when filled, provides the perfect target for your anger. In addition to smacking, you can also squeeze, squash and pinch the balls. However, this ball-abusing activity may be too close to the bone for some men but may be particularly welcomed by some women.
20. Tech Tools Stress Buster Desktop Punching Bag
BEST FOR PHYSICAL ANGER
If you’re putting everything you have into harming the object in front of you, you’d better make sure it can take it. The Tech Tools Stress Buster Desktop Punching Bag is made to take an office-based beating. From the strong suction cup which will keep the ball attached to your desk when the attack starts to the soft PVC leather ball which is going to bear the brunt, it really is built to take the pain. Plus, as it also includes a strong impact spring, it’ll simply take your anger and bounce straight back up, ready for the next round of what’s to come.
21. BalamsDesigns Stress Ball Brain
The BalamsDesigns Stress Ball Brain puts the very thing that’s causing you so much stress in your hands. Holding a model brain in your hands as your own brain overflows with stress and anger is likely to stimulate some pretty weird feelings. And that’s not to mention the fact that the detailed stress ball comes with its very own hand-painted 3D skull display to house the brain when it’s not in use. This is a pretty fun and functional display piece for home and office desks.
22. Lavender Luvies Lavender Stress Balls
The Lavender Luvies Lavender Stress Balls add an extra dimension to your stress-relieving experience. Because the stress balls are filled with fragrant lavender flowers, you’ll be able to enjoy a pleasant olfactory element in addition to the ball-squeezing one. This three-ball set includes all purple balls which feature an identifying single piece of lavender on the front. They’re ideal for office workers, students, teachers and anyone else who’d appreciate the appealing smell of lavender as they work away their worries.