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Exercise Ball Workout - Let's Strengthen the Core

by Marine Le Sager July 30, 2019

While abs are made in the kitchen, you still need to work them out at the gym, and the exercise ball is your best ally. In this blog post, I'll share with you plank exercises and mobility exercises you can do with the exercise ball to strengthen your core and your abs in no time!  


What you need to know about the Exercise Ball:


Why using the exercise ball?

If you are looking to improve your overall efforts and avoid injury at the gym then you need to strengthen your core. It is called core for a reason, it is the area of your body that supports many of our daily movements. To better understand why, let’s just have a quick reminder of what the abdominal wall muscles are: 

Abs consist of 4 different muscles. Together, these muscles will have a positive impact on your core stability, strength, your posture, and many other important functions regarding overall health

Abdominal Wall Muscles

  • Rectus Abdominis. A.k.a “the six-pack”. This muscle is crucial for holding a good posture, regulating breathing and protecting our internal organs. 
  • External ObliquesThis is the muscle that allows the trunk of your body to twist. It also helps to keep a good posture and it protects our internal organs as well.
  • Internal Obliques. Also accountable for twisting, bending, turning, and damn right they look sexy.
  • The Transversus AbdominisIs the muscle we will be talking about in this blog post, so please stick with me.

The Transversus Abdominis is located underneath the Rectus Abdominis and the Obliques and it is holding your entire abdominal structure together. 

Even though we don’t see this muscle it is incredibly important to maintain a functionally strong core. Without it, you simply don’t have the stable structure required to train the rest of the body effectively.

Working the transverse muscle will help you during your workout session when doing powerlifting exercises such as: 

  • Squats
  • Bench press
  • Deadlifts
  • Lunges

When we do these exercises, your core is contracted in order to help you push during the effort. Your core helps you keep a good posture as well as relieve the very important lumbar muscles.

The secret to working out this particular muscle is core strength

And what is a better ally than the exercise ball?

The exercise ball has different names. Some of the popular names are yoga ball, swiss ball, stability ball, fit ball, gym ball and the list goes on. This (very cheap) accessory allows you to focus on muscular contraction during stability exercises.

The exercises go from the easiest to the most complex. In addition, the instability caused by the exercise ball will require a deep strain on the muscles. Each movement requires optimal concentration and control of breathing. Your efforts are targeted and you become aware of your body.

The exercises performed on the exercise ball allow you to build up your body lengthwise thanks to stretching movements with a much wider amplitude than during exercises performed on the ground. Your deep muscles become stronger, flexible, and toned which also allows for a better upright posture.

Alright, let's get to work! Let's get started with the very promised exercise ball workout. It will only take about 10 to 12 minutes at the end of your usual routine!


Exercise Ball Planks

The Pike Crunch or W-Raise

Accessory: exercise ball 

Step by Step

Pike Crunch Swiss Ball

  • Start by placing the front part of your feet on the swiss ball and stretching out to get to high plank position. Your hands keep the same position throughout this exercise.
  • Now pull your feet towards you without losing contact with the stability ball. If the movement was done correctly, your hips should be now farther away from the ground.
  • Return to the initial position and repeat the movement until failure.

The Plank Walk 

Accessory: exercise ball

Step by Step

Exercise Ball Plank

  • Place your chest on the exercise ball and your hands on the ground.
  • Start walking forward with your hands. The exercise ball should roll through your body until only it reaches the tip of your toes.
  • Return to starting position and repeat until failure.

The Side Plank

Accessory: Bosu Ball

Step by Step

Side BOSU plank

  • Lie on your left side with your elbow and forearm on a Bosu ball if you have one or if you don't have one, on a yoga mat. 
  • Your feet are on the ground, one in front of the other. The upper foot should be in front of the lower foot.
  • Take your hips off the ground so that your body is aligned from ankles to shoulders.
  • Hold the position until failure.
  • Repeat on the right side.

TIP: If you want to add difficulty to the exercise add a hip movement. Drop your bottom hip toward the ground. Then reverse the movement and lift your hip towards the ceiling.

The Saw Plank 

Accessory: exercise ball

Step by Step

Saw Plank Exercise ball

  • Place your forearms on the exercise ball and get on plank position with your body forming a straight line. Clasp your hand together.
  • Keep your elbows apart to increase the instability, your feet flexed, and brace your core strongly.
  • Contract your abs and roll the exercise ball forward with your forearms.
  • Now pull your forearms back to the original position and repeat this backward and forward movement until failure.

Mobility & Core Exercises

The Ball Pass or leg lifts

Accessory: swiss ball

Step by Step

Ball Pass

  • Start by laying on your back with the swiss ball held between your hands above your head and touching the ground. Tighten your abs to keep low back pressed into the floor.
  • Now raise your legs and with your elbows locked move your hands towards your legs to form a V shape and transfer the ball from your hands to your feet and get both your feet and your hands back to starting position.
  • Repeat the ball passing movement until failure.

The Swiss Ball Crunch

Accessory: swiss ball

Step by Step

Swiss Ball Crunch

  • Sit on the swiss ball and take a few steps forward so that you roll over it until you feel your back is on top of the ball.
  • Your shoulders, your back, your lumbar and your pelvis are in contact with the exercise ball. 
  • Place your hands on the side of your temples and your eyes on the ceiling through all the exercise.
  • Slowly start crunching. Be careful not to fall to the floor.

The Russian Twist

Accessory: exercise ball and weights (optional)

Step by Step

Russian Swiss Ball Twist

  • Sit on the stability ball and take a few steps forward to roll over it so that it is beneath your shoulders.
  • Feet flat on the ground, raise your hips so that your body forms a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
  • Stretch your arms towards the ceiling, lock your shoulders, clamp your hands, and roll your upper as far as you can to your left.
  • Reverse the movement and roll all the way as far as you can to the right.
  • Repeat the left to right movement until failure.

Tip: Add difficulty to this exercise by holding weights on your hands.

The Plank Roll-Out

Accessory: stability ball

Step by Step

Plank Roll Out

  • Kneel down with the stability ball in front of you.
  • Clasp your hands together and place your forearms on top of the stability ball.
  • Slowly roll the ball forward making the ball roll towards your shoulders and your hips moving closer to the ground.
  • Now reverse the movement and repeat until failure.

The Mountain Climber

Accessory: stability or Bosu ball.

Step by Step

Mountain Climber Ball

  • Place your hands on the stability ball moving your feet away from your body forming a straight line from shoulders to toes.
  • Now bend your left knee toward your left elbow while keeping your right leg tight.
  • Come back on your initial position and repeat on the right side.
  • Repeat these movements until failure.

Workout Plan

Exercise duration
Breaks between sets
Sets
Total Time
45 sec 15 sec 1 to 3 10 to 30 min

 

Wrapping Up

We hope this article's recommendation will have you feeling stronger than ever before. As previously mentioned, you can totally perform one set of this exercise ball workouts at the end or when starting your daily workout or assign a day for core exercises exclusivelyDon’t forget to stretch your abdominals muscles at the end of the session, it will help your muscles to recover.

Once you are done working out don't forget to drink Falcon Protein to get the best out of your sweat. Have you checked our Matcha Latte Protein Shake recipe yet? For this and more post-workout snack please feel free to have a look at our Birdman Blog.

 

Get Falcon Protein


Marine Le Sager
Marine Le Sager

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