Stability balls are a great training tool for every exercise program. Any movement done on an unstable surface such as a stability ball is inherently more challenging. This week’s exercise—the stability ball lower back/core work series. Review the first four exercises, stability ball with squats, stability ball with lunges, stability ball with pushup plank, and stability ball lower back/core work series.
While on your back, reach straight legs long out of your hips and place heels on top of a stability ball. Engage your glutes while lifting your hips up towards the ceiling. Drop hips towards the floor without touching and repeat. Activate your core muscles to keep the ball from rolling out beneath your feet. Perform a set of 20 before advancing to the next exercise.
Once you’ve mastered the straight leg bridge, pull the ball in towards thighs and place heels on top of the ball. With bent knees, raise and lower hips by firing your glutes. Consistently maintain balanced bent knee position throughout the range of motion. Build up to one set of 20 and than add in a hamstring curl.
Adding in a hamstring curl is an advanced move. Raise hips into a bent knee bridge position. While up in a bridge, extend legs straight and than pull heels/ball back towards your thigh. Maintain your bridge while you flex and extend your legs. When you can do 20 reps smoothly, try performing a set of all three exercises in a row.
Melissa’s Stability Ball Series builds on her introductory Basic Exercises Series where she demonstrates Body Squats, Lunges, Planks, Improving Balance, Bridges, and Push Ups. Review last week’s introduction to determine what size ball you should be using. (Most gyms provide stability balls for their clients or you may purchase your own at a sports equipment supply store or online at Perform Better). Review the basic exercises by clicking on each title.