Bare Your Strength With the Exercise Ball
July 8, 2018
This month we are giving props to our props, and the 7” round exercise ball is one of our favorites! Its multiple uses in class make it the most well-rounded prop we have in the studio (pun intended). The ball is designed to show you just how strong you really are. Keep reading to learn how it’s used to strengthen your inner thighs, seat, upper body, and abdominals.
Our inner thighs are typically weaker than our outer thighs, which has the potential to lead to knee weakness and instability. The ball gives your inner thighs a chance to catch up to their outer counterparts. When you squeeze the ball, it presses back against you making you work harder. Resist the rebound to keep the contraction isometric and more effective at strengthening your inner thighs. Feel the burn, embrace the shake, and love the results.
Nothing lights up your hamstrings like placing the ball behind the back of your knee during seat work. Just placing the ball there fires up the muscle, not to mention squeezing it gently penetrates the muscle deeper and tones the back of your legs beautifully. Your seat isn’t going to lift itself, and with strong hamstrings it doesn’t have to. Your glutes and hamstrings are the dynamic duo that bring sexy back!
The special 2-ply construction makes for soft handling and durability when using the ball to tone your upper body. In second position thigh and pretzel seat work, the ball offers a challenge for your arms, abs, and upper back that improves balance, coordination, and core strength. When you hold the ball between your hands in one of these exercises, it initiates your core and more effectively triggers your stabilizers to support you. Try it next time you’re given the opportunity in class.
Placing the ball behind your back in high-curl is our little secret to flat abs. This variation of curl provides a challenging combination of concentric (shortening) and eccentric (lengthening) abdominal contractions that are effective at slimming and toning your waist. The resistance you get from pressing against the ball will instantly make you shake as you work to flatten your abs and strengthen your core.
Keep these benefits of the ball in mind next time you have the opportunity to use it in class. Strength is yours and the ball is designed to help you tap into it! Happy squeezing!