A stability ball is an excellent tool to incorporate into your workouts to build your core, range of motion, and mobility. But did you know you can also use it in place of a bench to get even more out of your lifts?
Using a stability ball in place of a bench is a great way to maximize the effectiveness of your workouts.
Replacing the bench with a ball for flat bench lifts increases activation of the glutes, hip drive, core engagement, and stabilizer muscles. Doing so also reinforces proper body positioning and bracing technique for when you do transition back to the bench.
The increased muscle engagement builds additional core strength and allows for a little extra calorie burn. The extra stabilization required also taxes the Central Nervous System, increasing balance and neuromuscular efficiency.
To use the ball for flat bench exercises:
Begin seated on the ball, weights on your legs.
Roll back onto the ball, walking your feet out, bringing the weights to your chest
The ball should be at your upper back, with your head rested on the ball allowing your neck to be in a neutral position
Squeeze your glutes, driving your hips upward, bringing your back flat in line with your shoulders and knees.
Try these flat bench exercises on your ball:
Dumbbell Chest Press
Close Grip Chest Press
You can even use the ball to do incline exercises, especially if you don’t have an incline bench. Try these:
Incline Chest Press
Incline Chest Fly
Ball Supported Rear Fly
You can also use the ball with seated exercises for increased core engagement. Try these:
Seated Overhead Shoulder Press
Seated Overhead Tricep Extensions
Seated Bicep Curls
Seated Shoulder Raises (Lateral, Front, Scaption)
🚨Important Safety Note🚨
Be sure not to exceed the recommended max weight capacity of your stability ball, including the weights you are lifting plus your current body weight.
As with all exercise, there is an element of risk that you assume when you perform this technique. If you are new to performing these exercises, start light and slow, then work your way up as you become more comfortable.
What do you think, are you ready to try this out? Lemme know what you think!
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