TOP 10 BALL EXERCISES TO TIGHTEN CORE
With everything that you’ve got going on in your life, taking time to tighten your core with ball exercises is probably not a high priority.
Sure, you’d love to have tight abs, and you exercise when you can, but your core could definitely use some more attention by doing exercises.
An easy way to incorporate core strengthening exercises into your exercise routine is to work the following 10 ball exercises into your routine.
As with other exercises, warm up before using an exercise ball. When performing specific exercises, keep your back straight, avoid locking your knees, and breathe properly.
The size of ball you use should be based on your height and weight. When sitting on a ball, your thighs should be parallel to the ground. Choose dumbbell weights based on your fitness level.
#1: Ball Push-Up Exercises
A great way to work your chest, triceps, upper pectoral, and core muscles is ball push-up exercises. Rest your upper thighs on the ball and place your hands on the floor shoulder width apart. Lower your upper body toward the ground until your arms are bent at 90 degrees, and then lift back up. This inclined position really targets your chest.
#2: Ball Sit-Up Exercises
Using the ball for sit-up exercises works your abdominal, core, and hip muscles. Sit on the top front of the ball and place your hands behind your head. Lie back until your back is touching the ball, and then slowly sit back up straight, lifting with your abs and not your neck.
#3: Ball Arm-Leg Extension Exercises
Alternating arm-leg extension exercises using the ball targets just about all major muscle groups—especially the buttocks, hamstrings, and upper and lower back muscles. Get on all fours with the exercise ball placed under your abdomen. Simultaneously lift and straighten your left leg and right arm. Extend them away from the body’s center while keeping your hips stable and balancing on the ball. Finally, bring your leg and arm back toward the ball. Perform eight extensions before switching sides.
#4: One-Legged Ball Squat Exercises
To work your quadriceps and buttocks, ball squats exercises are a great option. Stand up straight and place your right ankle on top of the ball behind you so your weight is on your left leg. Slowly lower your body until your left leg is bent at the knee at 90 degrees and your right leg extends behind you. Rise back up and lower again. Alternate sides after 10 squats.
#5: Ball Jackknife Exercises
Here’s another exercise that targets your abdominal and hip muscles. Place your hands on the floor shoulder-width apart, arms extended, ankles on the ball, and legs extended. Put your weight on your arms and roll the ball in toward your arms by bending your knees and waist. Extend your legs back out straight. Repeat.
#6: Ball Table Top Exercises
This exercise is quite simple to do, and it works many muscle groups, including your abdominals, shoulders, chest, and back. Sit on your knees and lean over onto the exercise ball, placing your forearms on the ball. Keep your back straight and bend your elbows at 90 degrees. Roll the ball forward and raise off your knees onto your toes. Extend your legs straight. Then return to your knees.
#7: Ball Triceps Extension Exercises
Also called the triceps blaster, the triceps extension exercises obviously works your triceps. Rest your forearms on the ball with your legs extended straight and toes on the floor. Keep your back straight and roll the ball toward your hands so you can lift yourself up and straighten your arms. Then slowly lower back down to your forearms.
#8: Lying Ball Squeeze Exercises
Targeting your inner thighs, back, and buttocks, the ball squeeze exercises is performed by lying on your back and holding the ball between your lower legs. Squeeze the ball while lifting your buttocks off the floor and squeezing your thighs together. Lower your back down to the floor and repeat.
#9: Ball Leg Curl Exercises
To work your hamstring muscles, lie on your back and rest the back of your calves and thighs on the ball. Squeeze the ball by pushing your feet toward your buttocks. Release and repeat.
#10: Ball Shoulder Flies Exercises
To work your shoulders, lay at an angle with your belly resting on the ball. Keep your back straight and your legs extended behind you. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and start with your arms at your sides. Raise your arms out to the sides until the dumbbells reach shoulder-level. Slowly release back to your sides and repeat.
Swap Your Office Chair Exercises
If your job calls for sitting at a desk all day, then swap out your chair for an exercise ball.
When sitting on an exercise ball, your body will constantly make small adjustments, often imperceptible, to remain balanced. These small movements, over the course of a day, result in the strengthening and tightening of your core.
Not only will strengthening your body’s core muscle group help improve your posture, improve your balance and guard against back injuries, it also creates a slimmer midsection.
Skinny Orange Creamsicles After Exercises
Enjoy this summer treat guilt-free. Store bought Popsicles contain artificial colors, flavors and sweeteners that spike your blood sugar and lead to weight gain. This recipe, on the other hand, is made with organic, Greek yogurt, and fresh fruit. Servings: 6
Here’s what you need…
- 2 cups organic, vanilla Greek yogurt
- 1 orange, peeled and seeded
- 1 cup pineapple chunks
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
- Fill the bottom 1/3 of each Popsicle mold with yogurt. Freeze for 15 minutes.
- In a high-speed blender, combine the orange, pineapple and agave nectar. Blend on high speed for a full minute.
- Fill the remaining space in each mold with the orange mixture. Freeze until solid.
Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 76 calories, 0 fat, 10mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, and 3g protein.