Bringing a sports ball (soccer or basketball sized) into your workout has a powerful effect on your workout. This prop can change the tempo and give your workout an extra boost. Today’s challenge incorporates a ball in a core workout with three core exercises. If you don’t have a ball, you can substitute a filled water bottle.
Core training has real benefits including better posture, lower back pain prevention, and increased ease of movement. Core workouts help you take on daily tasks with confidence and ease.
Core Workout: try these three core exercises with the ball. Do each exercise 10 times unless otherwise noted. Do one series, or for an even bigger challenge, try two times.
1. Crunches holding the ball overhead
Lie on your back with your knees bent. Hold the ball between your hands so that your elbows are next to your ears and the ball is touching the floor behind you. As you crunch, bring the ball and shoulders off the floor together, but keep your hands and ball above your head. You won’t come up as high, but you can feel your core muscles get challenged. Do 10 ball crunches.
2. Bridge with the ball
Stay in the same position on your back with your knees bent. This time put the ball between your knees and squeeze the ball actively as you move into the bridge position. Lift your tailbone and back off the floor and leave shoulders down. Hold for 30 seconds.
Need help with bridge? http://blog.teambetter.com/wake-up-with-bridge/
3. Plank with the ball
Start on the floor on all fours with your hips over your knees and shoulders over wrists. Walk your hands forward about 3-6 inches so that you are in a modified plank pose. Start with the ball between your hands and gently push the ball back and forth between you right and left hands. Pass the ball 10 times while holding plank position.
Core exercises are key components in working with my clients. Regardless if they are training for a 5k race, recovering from an injury, trying to lose weight, or just starting a fitness program, we incorporate core training into each training session. Having your abdominal muscles burning is feedback that your core is being challenged, but your core doesn’t have to be ‘burning’ for the exercises to be effective. It is important to be safe and mindful as you are doing them, and even more important to be aware of your core as you move through your day.
Read more about why having a strong core isn’t just about how your core looks but how you feel and move. Here’s a more challenging core workout with a medicine ball (weighted ball).
There will be more ball workout series coming to you that will stimulate your upper body and your legs. For a more intense, total body workout: https://www.ideafit.com/fitness-library/sample-class-outdoor-conditioning-drills