Stability balls are such a fun piece of equipment to use for workouts. They work strength, balance, stabilization and so much more. Used correctly they can give a total body workout. However, let’s focus on 9 exercises for a stability ball core workout.
This workout has different variations for beginners and advanced participants. Choose a level that works for you. Don’t over do it to begin with, start slow. Progress over time. If you haven’t used these balls before they are SUPER fun. Whether you call them fitness, exercise, swiss, yoga or stability balls… they can create a killer workout!
Stability Ball Core Workout
So this stability ball core workout contains 9 exercises. For beginners I’d suggest doing 8-10 reps and 1-2 sets. For seasoned workout warriors perhaps 10-15 reps of each exercise and 3-4 sets. Remember, any of these exercises could be included into a circuit workout too! Think outside the box. A full demonstration workout can be viewed in the video below.
Alternatively you can watch on YouTube. Remember to check out my YouTube Channel for more workouts and don’t forget to subscribe! I upload new videos every Tuesday and Friday, sometimes more!
Stability Ball Crunch
Lie back on the ball, knees bent feet on the floor. Have the fingertips at the temples and elbows wide. Perform a crunch on the ball. You know what a freaking crunch is right? Yeah! Just do that, but while on the stability ball.
Side note: When doing this you can get a nice stretch for the chest, and abs. I did a whole other post about that here. It’s actually something nice to do AFTER the workout, so check it out!
This is one of the more challenging exercises. Start with the hands on the floor under shoulders and the feet and shins resting on top of the stability ball. Draw the knees up towards chest.
Perform this exercise SLOWLY. Try not to use momentum. Give the core chance to work. Also: When the legs extend try to keep the hips a little lifted, rather than sagging downwards towards the floor. Bonus: The arms and chest get a workout too!
Stability Ball Transfer
I’ve talked about this one before in the fitness ball core workout. Start with the ball in the hands and lengthen arms/legs out. Crunch up, while bringing legs up. Transfer the ball to feet. Lengthen out and then bring legs/hands back up and transfer ball back to hands.
This one can be made way easier by keeping the knees bent. Or, not taking the arms or legs as close to the floor. Reduce the range of movement to work easier.
Stability Ball Glute Bridge
Remember, the core is more than just the abs. It’s everything in the torso including the glutes and back. So, lets work the posterior chain with a glute bridge. Staying on the floor, but with the knees bent and the feet on top of the ball. Drive the weight into the feet, lift and lower the pelvis.
This exercise really fires up the hamstrings and butt! Using the ball also adds a balance challenge which may bring some effort into the calves also!
Stability Ball Pike
This exercise in the stability ball core workout is definitely a more advanced move. So, if you’re a beginners and it’s too much, skip this one. Start in a plank position, with the hands on floor and shins on ball. Focus on lifting the butt UP rather than pulling the ball in or head under.
Again, it’s a tough exercise. It requires a lot of upper body strength, core and stability. So it might not be suitable for everyone. Listen to your body!
Stability Ball Leg Curl
Posterior chain again, cos remember the core is more than the abs! This exercise starts lying on the back with the legs extended and feet on the ball. Lift the hips up, and keep them lifted. Draw the knees towards the chest, and the feet towards the bum.
The key point is that to work the hamstrings the hips stay up. Remember you can take breaks after a few reps if it’s too much for your hamstrings. This exercise really targets the hamstrings and if they’re not used to working so hard, it can cause a cramp. So go easy.
Stability Ball Hip Extension
More butt shaping exercises with this hip extension glute squeeze. Start face down with the hips on the ball, and hands/elbows on the floor. To begin the feet will be connected to the floor. Use the posterior chain to elevate the legs. Hopefully feeling the contraction in the back and glutes.
This exercise can be done with bent knees for less work. If you feel any tension in the lower back, then reduce the height you lift the legs.
Stability Ball Plank
You probably know how to do a plank right? Well in this stability ball core workout we just do it on the ball. Three options for a plank
- hands/forearms on the ball
- hands on floor feet on the ball
- forearms on the floor, feet on the ball
For those one you can choose to hold for time. Or count your breath as your reps. If you’re counting your breath then breath slow and steady!
Stability Ball Roll Out
This exercise is a little tricky. But, once performed well, can be a great core exercise. Start by kneeling on the floor, with the ball in front and hands/forearms resting on the ball. Engage the core and reach the arms away from you. The ball with slide away from you, which will lower the torso.
When you come back in to kneeling it’s important to NOT let the butt pull back first but glide up as a single unit. Think about the navel pulling the ball back not the butt! No twerking!
- Have you done any of the core exercises in this workout?
- Do you use a stability ball for workouts?
- Would you buy a pink stability ball?
Yay! These workouts look great! I love my stability ball and I’ll probably have to try these out!
Definitely try some of the moves Susannah!
It has been ages since I’ve worked out with a stability ball, but I love these ideas. Thank you for sharing!
Me too! I like adding them into my weight lifting routines during ‘rest’ intervals.
My dad has a stability ball and for years my son thought it was the coolest toy ever and would roll it around! I had NO idea that there were so many exercises you could with one! Now I’ll have to borrow it, and give some of these a try!
Glad to help Kacie!
This looks like a great workout. I would love to try this.
Grab a ball and get busy!
Kimberly @ www.fitdisneymom.com
A pike on the stability ball is hard! My Pilates students have a hard time with that one.
Totally! I think it’s harder on the ball then in the TRX!
This looks like such a good workout! I don’t currently have a stability ball (not enough room) but I hope to get one in the future. I’ll have to check back to this workout when I do!
Hahaha we don’t really have room either. I use a ball as my office chair to save storage space
I love to excercise with the stability ball It makes excercising more fun and i feel ic can work more muscles at the time- Thanks for sharing this post I’ll definetely give this a good use
Definitely adds some upper body work to most of the moves! Get busy with your ball!
Great workout. Thanks for showing pictures on how to do each move. It helps when it comes to doing each move properly.
Thanks for showing the different ways to workout with a stability ball. I often lack ideas when it comes to working out, so I like having different options. I’ve found the stability ball to be good for stretching, too.
Oh I love the ball for stretching too!
Jenna @ A Savory Feast
This is just what I needed! I just bought a stability ball and have been looking for some ideas for how to use it. I’ll give these a try soon.
Glad to help! Definitely try some of these out!
I love the ab crunch and the plank, I do those a lot. But, that Pike – that scares me a little. I have a feeling I would fall on my head – clearly I need better balance 🙂
Definitely requires some balance, and a lot of core and upper body strength. But so good for the core!
I have a stability ball sitting in my bedroom. My hubby uses it regularly. Me? Not so much as I really struggle with staying stable! I am going to give a few of these exercises a try. Thanks!
Definitely give them a go!
So many great workouts on this list. I love all the photos and your great infographic at the end. Great to see a how to.
You mean that big blue ball in the corner of my bedroom is for THIS and not a ball for my toddler to roll around??? #MINDBLOWN Okay I’m pinning this so I can come back to it during naptime!!
Hahahah I know right! kids love these things!
I knew we were using our exercise ball wrong! we were trying to balance on it but nothing like what you have pictured above! I wonder if I have the core strength to pull some of those off ? Guess I need to find out!
hehehe definitely try some of these out!
I’ve definetely saving this post, as I bought a ball a few weeks back and have been forgetting todo it those days I can’t go to the gym. Some amazing workout moves, and great photos to show:)
Thanks Megan! I have other home workouts in my archive too that you can do from home!
Oh my God I can just see myself falling on my face/ass/you name it. Every time I try something on one of these balls my poor balance gets the best of me. But this does look fun!
Practice practice practice! Seriously helps!
I have heard great things about stability balls. These exercises look effective and like they won’t put too much pressure on the joints. This is what I need!
Some shoulder strength is required for some of the exercises, but no impact for sure.
The workout looks awesome! I just need some motivation to start now – maybe a matching outfit would actually help! 😀
hehehe definitely helps!
Ana De Jesus
This looks intense! Is it good for strengthening the upper back at all do you know? I have severe back and joint problems so I hope this would help!
Core is all about the abs AND the back. Yes these work the upper back, especially the glute squeeze, and swimmers
this looks like a fun way to get your exercise in for the day. I should get one of these & give it a try
Definitely, give these a go!
Robin Rue (@massholemommy)
That core workout looks killer (in a good way). I am looking forward to trying that tomorrow.
Hope you enjoy it!