Exercise Ball Workouts offer a big advantage over many other types of workouts: as you work your muscles doing different exercises on the ball, you are also working your stabilizer muscles at the same time. It’s like getting two workouts in one.
These muscles support your abs, spine and lower back. So in addition to tightening your abs for a flatter midsection, you are strengthening your stabilizer muscles than help prevent and alleviate back pain plus improve your posture.
Another great thing about an exercise ball (sometimes called a balance ball) is that it is cheap – you can get one for less than $20. That’s really all the equipment you need to do the workouts.
You can also take it with you when you travel. Simply deflate it and stick it in your travel bag. Most exercise balls come with a small hand pump that you can take with you as well.
If you are new to exercise ball workouts, this is a great ball to get because it comes complete with 2 workout DVDs included. It also comes with a resistance band you can use in your balance ball workouts and a pump to inflate the ball.
At about $20, this is a steal. I even use my exercise ball as a chair when I’m sitting at my desk. It feels great on my back and helps me keep my core engaged. That ball definitely has paid for itself with the use I get out of it.
How do you know which ball is the right size for you? When you sit on it, you want your quads to be parallel to the floor with your legs forming a 90 degree angle. If you’re sitting high, the ball is too big, if you’re sitting low, the ball is too small.
If you are short on time, or simply want to workout in 10-minute increments, this is a great option. This video has several 10-minute workouts included – each focusing on a different area of the body (ie butt and thigh, arms & shoulders, core) or a different style of workout (ie cardio, stretch).
Because of the shorter increments, this means you can mix and match the sessions if you decide to combine them in an hour-long workout.
What I like about 10 or 15 minute workouts is that it’s much easier to get started, knowing that you only need to workout for 10 minutes – however, one you get started, it’s easy to keep going. Next thing you know, it’s been 30 minutes or an hour.
This program is made by the same company as the video above, and with the same 10-minute strategy. Each session works different parts of the body in differently and can be done separately or mixed and matched together into a complete workout.
If you’re on the fence about which video to get, get both. One way that I keep myself motivated is to switch up my workout videos so that I don’t do the same thing everyday. If your goal is to get maximum results with minimum effort, this “switch-up” strategy helps because it works your muscles in multiple ways.
Exercise Ball Specifically for Back and Core
This stability ball is cool! I know people start using an exercise ball because of back pain – they get one to exercise and strengthen their core or they buy one to sit on while they are working. If this sounds like you, you may want to check out this option.
This peanut-shaped ball helps engage your core more efficiently, while stretching and strengthening your spine. It also includes a workout DVD with (3) 10-minute workouts:
- Core Focus
- Strong Core and More
- Back Pain Relief