Simple Core Training
Exercise is an essential part of any successful weight loss program. The great news is, it doesn’t have to be hard or grueling. And there are some great tools and resources you can use to build muscle, strengthen the core, and increase the heart rate to burn calories, including the handy exercise ball!
An Exercise Ball, also known as a fitness ball, is typically 55cm to 65cm in circumference and is used for a variety of different types of exercises, including Pilates and yoga. An exercise ball is effective because you’re typically using your core to balance yourself, regardless of the type of exercise you’re attempting to do. And by using your core, you’re strengthening it.
In this article, I’m going to share one powerful exercise that is sure to provide results quickly, and you can do it daily while watching TV. What’s the mysterious exercise? It’s the Knee Balance.
The Knee Balance:
Grab your fitness ball.
Position yourself in front of the ball.
Slowly put one knee on the ball.
Using your hands to help balance you on the ball, slowly place your second knee on the ball.
Contract your stomach and buttocks.
Slowly bring your body upright so you’re kneeling on the ball. You’re knees should be making a 90 degree angle with the ball.
Contract and squeeze all of your core muscles in, including your stomach, your thighs and your buttocks.
Do your best to balance on the ball for as long as possible.
If you fall off of the ball, get back up and repeat.
Repeat 3-5 times and hold for as long as possible each time.
* When you first begin, you may want to try this exercise close to something you can stabilize yourself with until you get used to the exercise, being mindful to steer clear of sharp or dangerous edges. The more you do it, the better you’ll get at balancing for long periods of time.
Though it might not seem like it, in addition to strengthening and toning your core, this exercise helps get your heart pumping so you move into aerobic exercise mode to help you burn more calories for weight loss.
In addition to the Knee Balance, another great exercise to use the Exercise Ball for is sit-ups. Because you need to balance yourself with your feet, it automatically engages your core muscles, so it gives you an added boost compared to normal floor sit-ups.
Exercise Ball Sit-ups:
Center yourself on the exercise ball with your feet firmly planted on the floor.
Lean back at a 45 degree angle with your hands behind your head for support.
Begin lifting and lowering your torso in quick pumps.
Repeat 30-50 times for 3-5 sets.
Using the Exercise Ball as part of your exercise routine for weight loss provides several benefits as described above. In addition, you can pick up an exercise ball with a hand pump for less than $ 10 at your local Wal-Mart or department store!