Ab Exercises on the BOSU Ball

by: Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN


Traditionally, ab exercises are done on the floor and consist of repetitive hip flexion movements like sit-ups, crunches, and reverser leg lifts.

The problem with those movements is that impose a great deal strain on the lumbar spine without improving the endurance of the deep abdominal muscles. Nor do they contribute to enhance spine stability.

Instead, doing ab exercises on the BOSU ball can offer your abs and core an exciting new (and safe) challenge. As such, these can and should be added to your workout routine. The inherent instability the BOSU ball presents opportunities for greater muscle activation and enhanced recruitment of deeper spinal stabilizing muscles such multifidus, transverse abdominus, and quadratus lumborum.

In above video, you'll notice that 3 of the 5 exercises involve no hip flexion and require that you maintain a neutral spine. In so doing, these "non-traditional" ab exercises require the activation of the all-important deep abdominal muscles, which are so important for spine stability and core health.

If you've never used the BOSU ball and think you have a strong set of abs, then I highly recommend you give this workout a shot. You will most certainly feel soreness in areas of your abs that you never thought existed. You will find these exercises challenging, fun, and highly rewarding.

Just remember, when it comes to training your abs, it's not so much about the movement so much as it is about the intrinsic muscle activation that you are able to elicit either mentally and/or through the ab exercise itself!


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