Taking Your Med Ball Exercise to the Next Level!

The oldest piece of exercise and rehabilitation equipment known to man, the Medicine Ball is the best prescription for introducing variety and fun into your exercise program!

Today’s exercises are on the advanced side of things. Attempt these only if you’ve already mastered the simple exercises from last week, or with the supervision of a fitness expert.


What’s more, most of the exercises you do with a med ball arecompound exercises that incorporate a LOT of major muscle groups and burn tons of calories!


A couple of tips before you get started:

  1. Keep to the edges and the corners of the gym floor to avoid widely flung bars and cables;
  2. Always start with the lightest weight ball available when learning a new med ball exercise;
  3. Gradually use (over weeks and months) heavier and heavier balls as you develop competence and strength.
  4. CHECK WITH YOUR TRAINER FIRST if you have injury or ailments, or are new to exercise in general

A relatively simple exercise for the core, position yourself at the base of a flat bench.  Balance a ball atop of your ankles with your feet held together.  Start out by holding onto the bench for stability.  Fully extend your legs, along with ball, then bend at the knee and bring your knees towards your chest.  Once comfortable with that, try going no hands without holding onto the bench!

try some of what I call offset med ball pass push ups. Assume a normal push up position, but with just one hand atop of a smallish (3 K) med ball. The fact that you’ll have one shoulder naturally higher in this position (it being over the ball) makes it an ‘offset.’

Overhead karate-type chops. Wile standing w/ feet shoulder width apart and with a slightly bent leg, grasp the ball with two hands. Raise the ball overhead. Then, while keeping your arms fully extended, bend at the waist and accelerate the ball downwards towards one foot, but don’t let go of the ball! Recover by bending only at the waist (keep those legs and arms mostly straight) standing upright again with the ball overhead, and arms fully extended throughout the motion. Bend at the waist again , but this time accelerate the ball downwards towards the other foot. Again, don’t let go! Repeat until fatigued.

Single arm supported dumbbell rows: support yourself in a plank/pushup-like position with one arm fully extended atop of a med ball. Then, grab a very light dumbbell with the other. Balance on the ball with the extended arm while knocking out a few single arm dumbbell rows with the other. You’ll train Tris, Delts, Pecs, Core, Traps, and Lumbar with just this one exercise! CAUTION: Do NOT do this exercise if you prefer to avoiding attention. It’s a difficult exercise and turns a lot of heads.

There are a few techniques for getting up onto the ball, but my favorite is to start with your left foot (for righties) atop of the med ball just left of the ball’s crown. Then, without hesitation, simply step up with the other foot and place it just to the right of the ball’s crown. The key is to try to keep the ball from moving as you step up onto it with the second foot. It takes some practice, but do persist.I’ve been doing this exercise for years to try to improve upon one legged balance needed to help my suffering hockey game. Even to this day it sometimes takes me 6 or 8 attempts to get up on top of the ball.

Once you’re standing on top, simply perform alternating dumbbellcurls as you would do standing. Just don’t fall of the ball! Try to ‘wrap’ your feet around the ball to put as much foot in contact with the ball as possible to improve control.

Mostly for biceps, but with significant core stability and balance training, try doing some standing dumbbell curls while standing on top of the med ball! Yes, on top of the med ball. It’s actually easier than you might think. Getting on top of the med ball is, of course, the trickiest part. You should try this with lots of open floor space and WITHOUT dumbbells before trying it with dumbbells. Find the largest, softest ball you can find to start with … it will squish flatter onto the floor and roll the least. Use harder, smaller balls as you get better. 





Or, if you’re looking for the perfect gift of health this holiday season, ask me about our “Trainer in a Bag” equipment and training package!


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