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10 Stability Ball Exercises You Definitely Need To Try

stability-ball-exercise

Remember that large inflatable ball you’ve seen at the gym? You know, the one you were convinced is only used for yoga ball exercises and nothing else. Well, that apparent beach ball is actually called a stability ball, and believe it or not, it is used for more than just yoga. The stability ball is an excellent addition to your workout and let’s just say you can set the difficulty of your typical workout a lot higher.

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  1. Wall Squats: This exercise works your glutes, quads and hamstrings.
  2. Hamstring Curls: Ideal for building mass, this exercise isolates the hamstrings, developing your strength and stability,
  3. Ball Lunge: An isolated leg movement, this exercise improves your lower body mobility and coordination.
  4. Balance-Push-Up: Works your upper chest and inner pecs, helping you build definition in your chest muscles.
  5. Back Extension: The perfect exercise for strengthening your lower back and giving you those back dimples.
  6. Pike: Improves arm, core, and shoulder strength, this exercise is perfect for creating overall stability,
  7. V-Sit with Ball: This exercise works your core muscles deeply, giving you a solid burn.
  8. Knee Tucks: Giving you core stability, this exercise is the best one to get ripped.
  9. Ski Step: Boosts your oblique strength while giving you a slimmer waist.
  10. Hand Off: As you move the ball from your feet to your hand and vice versa, this exercise improves your coordination while activating your core.

What Is A Stability Ball?

A stability ball is a lightweight air-filled ball, ranging in circumference from 55 to 75 centimeters. They were initially used as a rehabilitation tool for neuro-development treatment between the 1960s and ‘70s. It wasn’t until the late ‘90s and early 2000s that they made their debut in fitness centers.

The concept on which stability balls were made was to improve balance and stability (as the name suggests). Since your body engages more muscles to maintain balance, it can be a great way to enhance your workout. Stability ball exercises can increase coordination, balance, and proprioception, as well as improve your strength based on your workouts.

According to Cody Braun, a fitness specialist and expert:

“When performing stability ball exercises, the muscles that make up the core and surround the hips and shoulders have to work together to keep the body strong through a full range of motion.”

What To Look For In A Stability Ball?

Before you start using the stability ball in the gym or go out to buy your own, you need to know what size you need for the most effective stability ball exercises. Just like any other piece of equipment, a stability ball needs to fit your body, and it’s not that tough to figure out what will work for you.

All you need to know is your height. If you are taller than 5’4”, you need to go for a stability ball with a 65cm diameter. On the contrary, if you are shorter than 5’4”, then 55cm will suit you. Make sure you inflate it to the specified size so that it is firm but also has a bit of “give” to it.

10 Stability Ball Exercises You Need to Try

If you are looking for quick results, it is advised to incorporate balance training in your normal routine once or twice a week. It is also not necessary to dedicate an entire day; you can opt to add two or three exercises along with your usual workout.

1. Wall Squats

stability-ball-exercise

It’s time to put those quads to the test with this power move.

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and the back to the wall.
  • Place the ball between the lower back and the wall.
  • Now squat down slowly until the legs are at a 90-degree angle at the knees.
  • Use the ball to support the back as it rolls from the lower back to the shoulder blades.
  • Try repeating this for 10 to 15 reps.

Want to add some resistance? Try squats with resistance bands!

2. Hamstring Curl

stability-ball-exercise

  • Lie on the floor with arms extended along your torso and lower calves.
  • Rest your heels on the ball and engaging the glutes and abs, lift your hips from the floor.
  • Use your arms to balance yourself.
  • Exhale and slowly bring the knees in towards the hips, so the feet are resting flat on top of the ball.
  • Pause for a few seconds and go back to your original position.
  • Keep your hips up the whole time to get those gluteus “Maximus” benefits.
  • Start with ten reps and then gradually increase with time.

Build stronger legs with these 6 hamstrings exercises!

3. Ball Lunge

stability-ball-exercise

Ready to put your balancing skills to the test?

  • While standing, place the ball behind the body and put one foot top-down on the top of the ball.
  • Step the other foot out about six inches, and bend both knees in a deep lunge.
  • Make sure the knee of the front foot does not go over the toes.
  • If you feel this move is too advance, then you can start by doing this exercise on a chair or a bench.
  • This move will test your stability and strength, so try going for 8 to 10 reps.

Check out these 7 kettlebell lunges variations!

4. Balance-Push-Up

stability-ball-exercise

If you thought push-ups were getting too easy, here’s something you will struggle with even if you’ve been doing push-ups for years.

  • Place your shins on the top of the ball and do a push-up while balancing on the ball.
  • Since this exercise requires you to maintain your balance, you are required to use more muscles to maintain stability.
  • Basically, a push-up hopped up on steroids.

Learn how to do banded pushups to boost your upper body strength!

5. Back Extension

stability-ball-exercise

In the immortal words of Ice Cube, “You can do it, put your “back” into it,” this exercise is sure to push your back muscles to the limit.

  • Start with the stomach and hips on the ball with your legs extended straight behind.
  • Hold onto the ball with the hands for balance.
  • Raise the chest high like the yoga pose “Cobra,” bringing the hands to the back of the head.
  • Hold for a beat or two, and return to a relaxed position.
  • Repeat this for 12 to 15 reps.

Strengthen your lower back with deadlifts!

6. Pike

stability-ball-exercise

Think you’ve been in the gym long enough not to be afraid of any exercise? Well, be afraid, be very afraid. This exercise is going to have you sweating no matter how buff you are.

  • Start in a push-up position but with the toes instead of shins resting on top of the ball.
  • With straight legs, use the abdominals to pull the toes towards the chest.
  • Done correctly, the torso will be in a push-up position with the back straight (no arching or sagging) and legs angling down towards the ball.
  • If you think you’ve got what it takes, try going for 5 to 8 reps.

Try the kettlebell Turkish get-ups to build core stability!

7. V-Sit with Ball

stability-ball-exercise

V means victory when you are looking to get some killer abs.

  • Lie face up on the ground with ankles resting on the top of the stability ball.
  • With arms pointing towards the feet, roll the torso up, so the body forms a V with the hips on the ground.
  • Hold for five seconds, or long enough for your abs to be screaming in pain.
  • Think you got what it takes? Try going for 6 to 10 reps.

Try these 4 effective ab exercises!

8. Knee Tucks

stability-ball-exercise

  • Start in a push-up position with toes resting on the ball and straight arms, with hands on the ground under the shoulders.
  • Bring the knees towards the chest until the knees are directly under the hips.
  • Extend knees back to push-up position and repeat for 10 to 15 reps.

Learn how to do a diamond push-up!

9. Ski Step

stability-ball-exercise

We already talked about abs, but obliques are essential if you want those abs to shine.

  • Sit tall on the stability ball with feet together.
  • In a single motion, swing the feet to the right and the arms to the left.
  • Bring arms and legs back to center and repeat for 12 to 15 reps, alternating sides.

Get that killer v-shaped core with these 10 oblique exercises!

10. Hand Off

stability-ball-exercise

As cute as the name of this exercise sounds, it’s not child’s play.

  • Lie face up on the ground with arms and legs extended.
  • Grab the ball overhead with both hands.
  • In a single motion, lift the arms and legs in the air, transferring the ball from the hands to the feet.
  • At this point, only the hips and butt should be touching the ground.
  • Lower arms and legs with the ball between them to the ground.
  • This is probably the most intense one out of them all.
  • Try powering through 10 reps with the right form.

Try this workout to strengthen your lower abs!

Conclusion

Stability balls are a fantastic piece of equipment and as opposed to popular belief, are not only used for yoga. Stability ball exercises can give you the entire body workout at a higher difficulty. So next time you feel that extra burst of energy in the gym, try performing these exercises.

FAQs

What is stability ball exercise?

Stability ball exercises use a huge, inflatable ball that improves your balance, core strength, and overall stability. These exercises work several muscle groups at once. This workout boosts your athletic abilities by improving coordination.

Because the ball is unstable, incorporating it into your workout pushes your muscles to work extra hard to maintain balance. This makes the workout a lot more effective than a simple bodyweight routine.

What type of exercise is a stability ball mainly used for?

A stability ball can easily be incorporated into most of your bodyweight exercises. You can incorporate it into pilates, yoga, rehab training, or even strength training. It increases the intensity of a regular bodyweight exercise while boosting your balance and core stability.

You can do exercise ball workouts to eliminate muscle instability, enhance core strength, and improve your coordination.

Is stability ball good for abs?

Absolutely! Stability ball exercises are great for building core strength. Ultimately, they sculpt and tone your abs, giving you that chiseled and ripped core. Workouts including V-sit ups, push-ups, knee tucks, pikes, etc target your entire ab region, building a defined core.

Moreover, since the ball creates instability, it pushes your muscles to work extra hard to balance themselves out, conditioning your body for a more toned and athletic look.

What exercises can I do on a ball?

One of the best things about stability balls is that you can incorporate them into any exercise to add resistance and instability, which boosts your strength as well as overall body coordination. You can do several ball workouts such as:

  • Stability ball roll-outs
  • Chest presses with stability ball
  • Planks and bridges
  • Wall sits
  • Russian twists, holding the ball
  • Overhead squats
  • Lunges
What are 5 examples of balance?

To improve your balance and coordination, you can try the 5 exercises below:

  1. Single-Leg Stand: This exercise improves your balance, coordination, and your body’s ability to move. It also works your core and leg stabilizers, improving your flexibility.
  2. Bird Dog: This exercise conditions your glutes, legs, lower back, and core for strength. It also creates better coordination between upper and lower body muscles.
  3. Stability Ball Pass: This workout is great for getting those ripped abs. It also improves your hip flexors movement and lower back strength.
  4. Lateral Roll: This workout targets your upper body, particularly your shoulder muscles. It is also great for giving you a snatched waist as it works your obliques.
  5. Balance Reach: Working your lower back, hamstrings, quads, and core muscles, this exercise gives you the stability you need. It also enhances your overall flexibility, allowing you to move with ease.

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