Beauty & Health, From the Trainer

Get that FitBall Back Out!

By Ryan Unverzagt

I decided to give you a break from the FitBall last month but I also want you to get your money’s worth out of the one you have so let’s add another exercise using it to your regime. This month we are adding the FitBall Abdominal (Ab) Exchange. This is a great exercise for the rectus abdominus.

The start position is shown in Figure 1. The FitBall is held off the floor with your arms extended straight above the head. Notice how the feet are also held above the floor about a foot or two. This position elicits muscular tension through your core. Next, bring the ball overtop of your body while simultaneously raising your legs to “meet in the middle”. Obviously, the leg and arm muscles will be doing some work during this motion, but focus on contracting the abs to help bring the back of the shoulders off the floor to really make the repetition count.

So now that the FitBall is at the top, switch it from the hands to the feet by placing it between the inside of your ankles (Figure 2). It might take some practice before this transition becomes smooth. Squeeze the ball with your legs to secure it for the ride down. Slowly lower the ball, back of the shoulders, and your arms toward the floor. Notice again how the arms and ball never touch the floor because you want to keep tension on the abs the whole time during the exercise (Figure 3).

Try at least ten reps if you’ve never attempted the FitBall Ab Exchange. This is an advanced abdominal exercise that requires significant core strength to perform multiple sets and reps. I hope that I have given you another solid core exercise that you can add to your abdominal repertoire! Until next time….stay fit during the “Dog Days of Summer”!

About the Author: Unverzagt holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Wellness Management from Black Hills State University. He is a certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength & Conditioning Association and a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer through the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography.

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