Fitness balls are an amazing tool for those who are thinking about adding diversity to their workouts and who are willing to experiment with something new and maybe a little unusual and unconventional. Even though some might be confused about the benefits of such exercises it is worth at taking into consideration. To understand the basics of these types of exercises we must first look at the principles behind fitness ball exercises.
Fitness balls were first used by physical therapists to help patience recover from injuries and to get a minimum of workout. However it was soon discover that the potential of these fitness balls is much greater than it was believed to be. Because the ball is somewhat bouncy and thus unstable you need to be properly coordinated in order to be able to remain stable and to maintain your balance at the same time.
This is accomplished by using your core muscles sometimes without even noticing. Moreover if you attempt to do regular exercises they will automatically be more challenging as you will need to make effort both to do the exercise and to remain stable at the same time.
Taking these facts into account it can be quite easy to see why the fitness ball can be an invaluable tool for those who want to become fit faster. Before moving to the actual exercise suggestions it is important to make sure that you select the fitness ball properly.
Fortunately, the selection process is relatively easy. If you are under 5 feet tall a you should go for a 55 centimeters ball.
A 65 centimeters ball works best if you are between 5 feet and 5.7 feet all while if you are between 5.8 and 6.2 inches tall a 75 centimeters ball works best. If you are over 6.3 you need an 85 centimeters ball. Now that we’ve got the basics covered let’s take a look at some of the exercises that can be performed using this ball:
Elevated push-ups: Start by placing the front of knees on the ball and support your body weight by putting your hands on the floor and make sure your body is in a parallel position to the floor. Lower your body just like you would to with a regular pushup and then come back up. You can inhale as you lower down and exhale as you move back up. This exercise is good choice if you want to work your arms, pectoral muscles and your abs.
Ab rolls. Start in kneeling position with the ball at a close distance from you. Put your hands on the ball keeping them clasped. Then slowly extend your body keeping your balance the whole time and then come back up to the starting position. You should aim to do 12 to 16 repetitions.
Back extensions can a simple and effective exercise for those who want to work the lower back. Start by placing your belly on the ball. Make sure that the ball is under your your hips and that the legs are either straight or your knees are slightly bent. Put your hands behind your head lift your chest up until your body is in a straight line and then lower back to the starting position.
Crunches: For this exercise you will need to fist place your lower back on the ball and keep the legs parallel on the floor. Once you get the position right you are ready to perform the crunches as you normally do making sure you use the abdominal muscles properly to support the movement. Adjust the number of sets and the number of repetitions depending on your current fitness level.
The exercises presented above are only a small fraction of the exercises you can do using this fitness tool. Experiment with a variety of different exercises and make up your own in order to be able to get a full and complex workout that will help you achieve your fitness goals.