We get a number of enquiries about the scent of the AOK swiss balls. The smell comes from the oil blend we use in the manufacture of the balls – a mixture of natural oils – lemon & citronella. We do not use Phthalates such as DEHP and all our products are non-toxic and are classified “Phthalate Free” with the European Union standards for Phthalates.
You can safely wash the balls with dish-washing detergent or soap as this will get rid of the oil that seeps to the surface. It may take a couple of washes. Avoid using strong solvents as they may permanently damage your AOK ball – mediBall, Duraball, Max Ball and Classic Ball. It also applies to our medicine balls, massage balls, Cyclone Balls, Pilates Ball and Duradisc.
We use lemon and citronella oils as they are accepted by hospitals for their natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. We recommend cleaning the balls regularly with an emulsion of lemon (you can use pine or eucalyptus) oil and water in the ratio 1 part oil to 30 parts water.
This oil blend has not changed for 15 years although in production the last balls in a batch tend to have a slightly higher oil content. This leads to slight variations in the strength of the scent.
In cooler climates where your ball is inflated in an enclosed space with central heating you will accelerate the oil moving to the ball surface and the scent will be quite strong. This is particularly apparent in the northern hemisphere (North America and Northern Europe) where ambient room temperatures are high and fresh air circulation low. If the scent bothers you simply give the ball a good wash and allow as much fresh air ventilation as possible over the first few days.
Citronella oil is one of the essential oils obtained from the leaves and stems of different species of Cymbopogon. The oil is used extensively as a source of perfumery chemicals and flavouring industries throughout the world.
Citronella oil is also a renowned plant-based insect repellent, and has been registered for this use in the United States since 1948. The United States Environmental Protection Agency considers oil of citronella as a biopesticide with a non-toxic mode of action. Research also shows that citronella oil has strong antifungal properties.
Lemon oil is commonly used to deodorize, remove grease, bleach stain, and disinfect. Its antibacterial uses because it has a low pH. Researchers at Ohio State University reveals that lemon oil aroma may enhance your mood, and relax you.