The exercise ball or stability ball is a common site at most gyms but highly underused. Eurofit will show you the best exercise ball workouts to get the most out of your exercise routine!
There are many benefits to using a stability or exercise ball. When performing movements on a ball, your are forced to balance or stabilize yourself.
Keeping yourself balanced and steady for each movement requires engaging more muscles than a typical standing or bench movement.
Incorporating an exercise ball more frequently into your workouts will build a stronger core and increase your pillar strength.
Your pillar of strength is your torso area from which all movements in the body originate or move through.
There are 8 muscles including the abdominals, obliques, spinal, iliopsoas and the glute muscles.
Using an exercise ball will challenge more muscles for greater proprioceptor activity.
Proprioception is the sense of knowing where your body part is in space. In other words, your sense of balance. For more proprioceptive info and their roles in the body, check out physiology.org.
Before and during each exercise, focus on how your muscles engage throughout each of the best exercise ball workouts. With repetition, you will no longer have to focus on engaging the correct muscles.
Soon these movements will become a subconscious efforts and all you have to do is count. The movements may seem strange and difficult at first but give them two weeks and you'll be amazed at your progress!
Begin by lying across the ball with your hands and feet on the floor. Keep your hands under your shoulders.
courtesy American Council on Exercise
American Council on Exercise recommends you take a few deep breaths and make note of how your abs feel when you inhale and exhale.
The exhale feeling is the ab engagement you want to maintain throughout this exercise.
Slowly walk yourself forward until your hips are directly over the top of the ball. Keep your feet and legs together and lift your legs off the floor until they are parallel with floor.
Maintain a tight posture and slowly lower toes to the floor and repeat 25 times. This exercise can be performed on a daily basis.
Most are all too familiar with leg day and the different variations on lunges like alternating, single leg, front to backs, plie's, jumping to name a few.
Add in a stability ball to engage more muscles for a more complete workout.
The reverse lunge requires balance on your static leg while keeping the ball underfoot on the moving leg.
courtesy Huffington Post
Keep your eyes on the horizon and don't lean forward. Your abs should feel nice and taut. Repeat 25 times. this exercise can be performed once a week.
Begin with your shins on the ball and your hands at shoulder width on the floor in front of you. Raise your body up until your arms are extended. Repeat 25 times.
This is a chest exercise but can be performed daily if desired after the initial soreness has disappeared.
As you master the push-up, begin moving your arms into different positions to engage challenge more muscles.
To engage the triceps more, move your hands under your shoulders or in a diamond position below your chest.
Once you are comfortable with the push up movement, try adding in a pike. This is an advanced movement so take your time.
Start in the push-up position, don't let your back bow. Keep it nice and straight. Raise to full arm extension.
Slowly roll the ball towards your hands with your feet only bending at the waist. Keep your back straight and in line with your neck.
You will engage the abs, shoulders, arms and chest. Again, if you alternate hand positions, you will have a more complete workout!
This is a difficult chest, shoulder, ab and arm exercise. Repeat 25 times once per week.
As the exercise becomes easy, you may perform more frequently. This is one of the most challenging and complete best exercise ball workouts.
Exercise ball crunches are an excellent way to engage and challenge the muscles in the back, shoulders and hips as well as your abs..
The primary muscles used are the three ab muscles plus the secondary erector spinae, deltoids and rhomboids of the shoulder, your minimus and medius glutes and the adductors in your hips and thighs.
The proper form for this movement begins with the feet firmly on the floor as close together as you can maintain them with your knees bent.
The ball is placed at the small of your back while your back is curled over the ball with your hands supporting your head.
As you begin the movement, try to pull your ribs to your hips. If you are feeling any back strain, you are not pulling with your abs. Stop and focus on good form by crunching your upper abs toward your waist.
As your shoulders come off of the ball, release back to the starting position. The movement is actually quite small but extremely effective. Repeat 25 times.
This exercise can be performed daily with increasing sets and reps. Try to hold your legs as close together as possible. A narrow stance will ensure your pillar muscles are balancing you and not your feet due to your wide stance.
Find the right fit using the chart below. The ball should be firm, not squishy.
We hope you have enjoyed Eurofit's Best Exercise Ball Workouts. They are some of our favorites we incorporate into our clients' and our personal routines for optimum fitness results..
featured image courtesy of Getty Images
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