- I have been a teacher of fitness and health for thirty years. In 1989 I was certified for personal training with the National Acadamy of Sports Medicine. I had a gym in Santa Barbara for eight years. Co-owned and created a spinning bike company which manufactured bikes for five years. Also I have worked with nutrition companies for twenty years. Along with many wonderful non famous people I have trained many celebrities, and members of the Royal Family. My own athletic past consists of long distance running, long distance cycling, cross country skiing, down hill skiing, rollerblading, hiking, sand running, track work, and weight training. I have authored two fitness columns in local papers, and have been writing this blog since January 2010.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Exercise Ball; A Great Way to Get Into Shape
Exercise balls are excellent to strengthen, tone, and define your body. The great thing about using an exercise ball, is that you really don't need anything else. Adding a pair of dumbbells to your workout will give you several more options if you choose to do so.
Using an exercise ball not only helps to strengthen certain body parts that are particular to the exercise, but will constantly work your core as well. It will help you to develop better balance and coordination.
Doing push ups on a ball will strengthen your whole upper body. When your hips are on the ball and your upper body is down, the move will be easier. As you move your hips away from the ball, and move closer to your feet, the push up becomes harder.
Standing tall, holding the ball overhead and then bending to the side is beneficial for your side and oblique muscle.
Positioning yourself on the ball for abdominal crunches is a good way to work your abs. Variations of twisting from side to side, or slightly raising opposite knees to elbows is also effective.
Holding the ball against a wall and squatting until your legs are parallel to the floor will shape up your legs and butt. You can hold dumbbells to intensify this exercise.
Using a ball for lunges is very effective. This move will definitely improve your balance, core, and coordination skills.
The ball can be used to perform any free weight move that is normally done on a weight bench. The difference is your core is constantly being worked. You can do bicep curls, chest press, one armed rows, shoulder press, chest pullovers, and any other strength move that requires dumbbells.
A good sturdy non-burst exercise ball can cost anywhere from $20.00 to $80.00. It is a great investment for your fitness program. It doesn't take up a lot of room, it is light weight, and can be done anytime in the convenience of your own home. Gotta love that!
Give the exercise ball a try if you want to strength train. It really is one of the best and most inexpensive way to train. You will love the results if you use it consistently, I promise!