Posted on April 06, 2018 by Josh Puttock

A sedentary lifestyle contributes significantly to health problems, such as the increased occurrence of obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular issues; the list is endless. Allocating a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity per day (walking, jogging, attending the gym, home exercises) not only controls weight gain, but helps with weight loss, improves self-confidence, and increases self-awareness.

One of the popular pieces of fitness equipment is the Swiss ball as we all know it, or stability ball as it’s officially named. According to biomechanics and scientists, the benefits of including the stability ball in a regular workout routine are tremendously high, especially when we are considering the ball’s instability on floor/surfaces and its versatility. The Swiss ball could be used for a warm up routine, as a main workout or for cooling down, for low impact exercises or high intense ones.

Anyone can use the stability ball too; from children, to experienced athletes and elderly people. In the past few years, many specialists started to recommend the Swiss ball as an office chair for people spending more than eight hours sitting in front of their desk – as a form of active sitting. There are many benefits that can be taken from including the Swiss ball in a daily workout routine, so we recommend you try a few of the useful exercises below.

1) Stability ball squats

Targeted muscles: quadriceps, glutes, core belt

Difficulty: low

Focus: good alignment for legs and back, low impact exercise

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 3 sets of 12-15 reps


2) Split narrow stance lunges

Targeted muscles: quadriceps, hamstrings, core belt

Difficulty: intermediate

Focus: stability and balance; coordination; quadriceps workout

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 4 sets of 12-15 reps


3) Back extensions

Targeted muscles: lower back muscle groups, trapezius, glutes, hamstrings, core belt

Difficulty: intermediate

Focus: strengthen back muscle and core groups for a good spine alignment

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 3 sets of decreasing pyramids 15, 12, 9 reps

 

 

 


4) Prone hip extensions

Targeted muscles: lumbar muscle groups, glutes, hamstrings, core belt

Difficulty: beginner to intermediate

Focus: developing good coordination; strengthen the lower back muscle groups for a normal spine posture

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 3 sets of decreasing pyramids of 15, 12, 9 reps

 

 


5) Core workout – Russian twist on top of stability ball

Targeted muscles: Core belt

Difficulty: beginner to intermediate

Focus: coordination and balance improvement through the development of Core muscle groups

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 4 sets of 12-15 reps

 

 


6) Knee tuck on top of the Swiss ball

Targeted muscles: rectus abdominis; lumbar muscles groups

Difficulty: intermediate

Focus: coordination and balance improvement through core muscle groups development

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 4 sets of 15-20 reps

 

 


7) Decline push ups on top of the Swiss ball

Targeted muscles: pectoralis major (upper chest muscles), core belt, frontal deltoids (shoulders)

Difficulty: intermediate to advanced; not recommended for people wearing glasses, considering the body position on maximum effort

Focus: increasing the coordination and stability, developing a good alignment (head, spine, legs); strengthen the upper chest muscles

Equipment: stability ball

Perform: 4 sets of 10-15 reps

 


8) Chest fly with dumbbells on the top of the Swiss ball

Targeted muscles: pectoralis (chest muscles); core belt; glutes

Difficulty: beginner to intermediate

Focus: coordination and balance improvement; strengthen the chest muscle groups; hip mobility

Equipment: stability ball, a pair of dumbbells

Perform: 4 sets of 12-15 reps

 

 

 

You can incorporate the stability ball in your daily routine, or you can choose the Swiss ball as a separate routine!

Acknowledgements: I would like to express my gratitude to David Gordon, our motive8 team member, who voluntarily participated to demonstrate the exercises.

By Daniela Mohor, Gym and Spa Operative