You know that large, often brightly colored ball you see around the gym? That’s a stability or Swiss ball. You may also hear it referred to as a therapy ball, birth ball, balance ball or body ball. The stability ball is an extremely versatile tool that is often underutilized. Including the ball in your workouts can enhance core function and test your balance.
Today’s 25-minute express workout focuses on a full-body burn that supports your overall strength and balance. For maximum results, see if you can push through the entire circuit of exercises before taking a break. But remember form is important. Take special care when your balance is tested!
Stability Ball Workout
What you need: your bodyweight and the ball!
Time: 25 minutes
Recommended Intensity: 12 reps per exercise, 2 circuits | 60 seconds rest between circuits
1. Split Squat
- Stand upright with one foot on a ball behind you, with your arms by your side.
- Drop your body down toward the floor, bending at your hips and knees and leaning your torso slightly forward.
- Push off your front foot to return to start position. Complete all reps on one side before switching to the other.
- Support your body with your hands on the ball, elbows bent and chest nearly touching it, with your legs straight out, on your toes.
- Push up to a straight arm position, keeping your back flat and your hips in line with your shoulders throughout.
- Lower your body back to the start position and repeat.
*Modification: Do push-ups on a stable surface and work your way toward using the ball.
3. Ab Crunch
- Lie with the center of your back on the ball, hands at the sides of your head and your feet flat, knees bent.
- Lift your head and shoulders off the ball, contracting your abdominal muscles. Do not pull your head up with your hands.
- Lower your head and shoulders and repeat.
4. Overhead Deadlift
- Start in a squat position, holding the ball on the floor in front of you.
- Stand upright and lift your ball overhead, extending your arms fully.
- Lower the ball back to the floor, returning to the squat position.
5. Tricep Dip
- Place your hands on the ball behind you, with your arms straight, feet flat in front.
- Lower your body down, bending at the elbows and knees until your lower back touches the ball.
- Push up, returning to the starting position.
*Modification: Do tricep dips on a hard, stable surface and work your way toward using the ball.
6. Mountain Climber
- Place your hands on the ball, with your arms straight and legs straight out behind, resting on your toes.
- Bring one knee in toward the ball, keeping the rest of your body in the push-up position.
- Straighten this leg and repeat on the other side. Keep your back flat and your hips in line with your shoulders throughout.
7. Leg Raise
- Lie on your back with your legs straight and the ball between your feet, hands by your sides.
- Raise your legs straight up, slightly lifting your lower back off the floor.
- Lower your legs to tap the ball on the floor and repeat, keeping your upper body stable and your legs straight throughout the movement.
8. Roll Out
- Kneel on the floor with your forearms on the ball and your chest on your forearms.
- Push the ball forward, rolling it along your forearms as you extend your arms, keeping your back neutral/flat.
- Pull the ball back in to the start position.
9. Back Extension
- Lie face down with your chest on the ball, your arms crossed over your upper chest, and your legs straight out behind.
- Raise your chest up off the ball, coming to an upright position.
- Do not bounce up and down on the ball as you perform each rep.
10. Glute Bridge
- Lie on your back with your heels on the ball, legs straight and your hands at your sides.
- Raise your hips off the floor, making a straight like from your feet to your shoulders.
- Lower your body back to the floor and repeat.