A fitness ball is a great tool for making your exercise routine just a little more varied and fun.
The most popular use of an exercise ball is to do ab crunches laying back over the ball. But there are many other ways to work your abdominals with the swiss ball. Try this exercise – fitness ball curl ups are a favourite at The Health Hub and check out Natalie putting her own signature on it in the video below.
Lie down on your back, holding the swiss ball over your head. Knees bent, feet off the ground.
Lift your shoulders in a ‘crunch’ bringing the ball forward – This works your upper abdominals giving you a strong torso and flatter tummy.
Place the ball between your legs as if you are hugging it with your thighs – This activates the inner thigh muscles helping to strengthen and tone those squishy bits that no one wants.
As you lower the shoulders back to the floor and bring your arms over head, lower your legs until the ball almost touches the floor – This stretches out the abdominals getting them ready for a more effective contraction.
As you crunch up with your shoulders, lift your legs to bring the ball towards your chest, also lifting your hips up a little off the ground – This works the lower abdominals, which grow progressively weaker with age.
Take the ball into your hands ready to repeat the movement. This counts as one repetition. Aim for 3 sets of 20 repetitions.
In the video below Natalie tends to throw the ball rather than pass it from hands to thighs. Whilst this may slightly lessen the intensity on her abdominals, as she does not need to come up as far to complete the movement. It is still working her abs and is great for her coordination – another aspect of health and fitness that we need to work on, especially as we grow older.
For more great ideas on how to get the most out of your exercise ball, call Rachel on 0402 903 732