One of the less expensive workout equipment today is the fitness ball. The fitness ball, also called Swiss ball, exercise ball, workout ball, or physio-ball is portable equipment for ball workouts that you can carry even on vacation because it can be inflated with air pump and deflated for storage.
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The health benefits
By using the fitness ball, you can tone up and strengthen your core, perform lower body and upper body exercises and stretches. The ball workouts when included in your workout routine can improve balance, flexibility, strength, and core stability. Also, working out with the ball can improve heart health and help mend injured knee, hip, and back.
The fitness ball is recommended to people with back problems to support their lower back as they engage in stretching and exercise. When you sit on the ball, you activate your stabilizer muscles in your midsection which improve your posture. These muscles protect your spine when you bend, lift, throw, reach, and run so keeping them in good condition is very important. You can do several moves using the fitness ball, targeting every part of your body from your arms down to your legs. You can learn more about using the fitness ball by reading the Pilates on the Ball: The World’s Most Popular Workout Using the Exercise Ball ($28) sold at eBay.
The fitness ball supports the posterior muscles and lower back during exercise so providing a solution to imbalances on your muscles. If you want to feel and look good, tone your hamstrings, buttocks, and back with the fitness ball like the Yoga Ball Blue 85CM Health gym exercise Ball yoga fitness With Air Pump ($25.00) from eBay.
The ball workouts
Like any other workout, you should start with a warm-up and end with a cool down routine. By warming up prior to exercise, muscles will be stretched in preparation for the workout while the cooling down stretches is done to ease soreness of muscles and facilitate recovery.
You should wear a proper workout gear so you can move easily and to prevent injury. Shop for a stretch top, stretch pants, and workout shoes from Kmart like the Everlast® Sport Women’s Padded Racerback Sports Bra ($9.98), Joe Boxer Junior’s Yoga Capris – Love ($12.74), and Athletech Women’s Ath L-Willow 2 Athletic Shoe – Black/Multi ($12.98).
Here is a guide for ball workouts that we recommend for you to follow.
1. Tone up your triceps by placing your hands on the edge of a bench with your fingers pointing forward and laying your chest down on the bench. Next, rest your calves over the fitness ball and lift yourself up from the bench by stretching your arms then, lower your body back to the bench. Do this 15 times.
2. Perform abdominal crunches by lying on the floor with your arms close to your body and calves on top of the ball. Without arching your back, lift your backside off the floor while keeping your abdominals tight for support. Bend your knees and roll the ball towards your buttocks with your feet until your legs lay flat on top of the ball. Slowly return the ball to its original position. Do this 15 times.
3. Lie like a plank by assuming a push-up position and rest your forearms on the top of the ball. Keep your neck in line with your spine and your abdominal muscles strong for 45 seconds.
4. Do some crunches by resting your middle back on top of the ball, arms straight and palms over your upper thighs. Keeping your hands flat on your thighs, curl your upper body forward then lower back to starting position. Do this 15 times.
5. Position your feet apart and hold the ball out in front of you. Roll the ball down to your thighs with your arms straight and press the ball up over your head until your arms are extended fully then, return to original position. Do this 15 times.
6. Perform side squats by holding the ball with your arms straight above your head and feet apart, in line with your hip. Bend your knees, while keeping your abs tight and your back flat, and twist your upper body toward the direction of your left foot. Return to original position with the ball over your head. Do the same process to your right side. Do this 15 times.
The ball workouts will only take 15 minutes to perform. Thus, it will not take the most of your time daily. If you want longer ball workouts with more intense training, we recommend that you watch video tutorials like the Karen Voight DVD Butt Legs & Tummy Ball Video ($9.99) as well as the Streamline Fitness AM&PM Exercise ($15.99) available in eBay.
The ball workouts will only be effective if you do it regularly. Choose the best time of the day that you can perform the exercise for it to be a part of your daily routine. If you think about it as a part of your daily activities, you will not skip it. After all, you are doing this for yourself not for anybody else. You want to look good and feel good? Then do hard work and sacrifice!
It is best that you accompany the ball workouts with a weight loss diet for faster result. Look for a diet that best suits your lifestyle and one that you can easily follow. People get discouraged when they are given complicated diet that took a lot of time preparing or very expensive when ordered from wellness food shops. There are numerous diet programs available in the market, you can browse them over the internet or you can purchase diet books on eBay.
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