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Stability Ball Exercises for Upper and Lower Body Muscles

A stability ball can be an inexpensive exercise and fitness tool anyone can use to improve their balance, flexibility and strength. To get great toning and health results, all you need is a stability ball and your trusty pair of Reebok athletic shoes (or whatever brand you choose to sport).

stability ball exercises

There’s no need for expensive training equipment, a trainer or a workout video, although you may be able to find workout videos specifically for stability ball exercises if you feel the need for one. You can find various brands of stability balls in most exercise departments of your local general merchandise store, or online. The Resist-A-Ball brands are quite popular due to their high quality and durability. They can hold up to 1000 pounds of static weight!

Before you start any exercise program, itís a good idea to talk with your doctor about your limitations or any injuries you may have. However, these stability ball exercises are for beginners and unless you suffer with a pre-existing medical condition your doctor will likely approve. Remember, when youíre new to the stability ball exercise routine, you may want to do your exercises next to a wall or a chair until you reach better balance.

Basic stability ball exercises and tips include:

Ball Circles

To get comfortable with the stability ball and its function, start with this simple move. Sit on the ball and put your hands either on the ball for balance or place them behind your head for a challenge. Start to slowly roll your hips in a circle toward the right, making small circles. As you get more comfortable with the ball, try larger circles. Do approximately 15 circles and then repeat toward the left. This helps your core muscles and hips get toned and shapely.

Seated March

Again, sit on the ball with a straight back and your abs held in. Start to march slowly, lifting your right foot then your left off of the floor like youíre marching in place. When you get comfortable with this movement, lift your knees higher and faster. Do this for up to 2 minutes at a time. These activities help work your lower body, legs, glutes and hips.

Seated Balance

Start by sitting on the ball, with your back straight and abs held tightly in. Put your hands behind your head and lift your left foot off of the floor. Hold it in the air for 5 seconds and then lower it. Repeat, alternating legs for 10 reps.

Stability Ball Pushup

To work your upper body, arms and chest, the stability ball can be very useful. While you can do many upper body moves like bicep curls when you add free weights to the stability ball program, the stability ball pushup requires only the ball itself and is quite simple to learn. Begin by kneeling in front of the stability ball, on your knees. Lay down over the top of the ball and walk forward one hand at a time. Stop when your thighs are on the top of the ball, hands are on the floor and feet are off of the floor. Put your legs together and place your hands directly under your shoulders. Do a traditional pushup movement, by lowering yourself on the floor, bending your arms and then pushing yourself back up.

Continue reading the next aerobics article on core training exercises

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