Core Exercises with Stability Ball

Filed under : Fitness & Exercise

Core Exercises target strengthening the core muscles inclusive of abdominals, pelvis and back area. Stability or fitness balls in varying sizes could be used for doing several core exercises. In majority of the exercises, it is preferable to opt for such a stability ball that facilitates the knees in making a perpendicular inclination while seated on it with the feet placed on the ground. The firmness of the stability ball is directly proportional to the difficulty level of the core exercises being undertaken with it.

All the core exercises have to be done 5 times, breathing liberally and intensely during each one of the core exercises. Focusing to tighten the deep-set abdominals (transversus abdominis) in every exercise is crucial. As the fitness levels rise, one could increase the count to 10-15 reps.

Reaches and Squats

Reaches and Squats

  • Holding the stability ball ahead of oneself and bending the knees. Keeping back erect and arms parallel to the ground and not letting the knees in extending past the feet.
  • Tightening the abdominal muscles.
  • Rotating the chest and reaching the stability ball towards one’s right side and holding for 3 seconds.
  • Returning to beginning pose and repeating on the left side as well.
  • Varying the core exercise by grasping the ball in a downwardly facing positioning or an upwardly facing positioning.
Abs-crunching Moves

core exercises

Abs crunches are a characteristic core exercise done in the following way:

  • Being seated on a stability ball with one’s feet hip width apart and rested on the ground, back maintained in erect posture and arms to be crossed against the torso.
  • Tightening the abs and leaning backwards till the abs muscles thrust in (refer image) and restrain breathing for 3 seconds.
  • Returning to the beginning stance and repeating.


For working varied core muscles in combo, bridges could be tried.

  • Lying down on the back with legs to be rested atop a stability ball.
  • Now tightening the abs muscles, raising the hip and butt away from the ground into a bridge-formation (as in image) and then holding for 3 deep gasps. Apart from the core muscles contracting and feeling the strain, even muscles of the back, glutes and hamstring sense contraction for keeping one is position.
  • Returning to the beginning pose and repeating.
  • For additional challenges, one could start by raising the left leg off the stability ball (as in image) and repeating the same with the right leg.
Bridges with Heel Digging

Bridges with Heel Digging

Once comfort level with the bridges is gained then heel digs could be added.

  • Lying on the back and legs rested atop the stability ball, raising the hip and butts away from the ground and getting in the bridge position.
  • Now tightening the abs muscles and keeping hip region away from the ground while one draws the ball nearer to the butts using the feet. Digging the heels inside the ball for grip and engaging the muscles alongside the backside of the thigh area (hamstring) and holding breathing for 3 seconds.
  • Reverting to beginning pose and repeating.

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