Everyone can benefit from incorporating core and balance training into their exercise routine. These exercises can be performed on alternate days and/or on rest days from your aerobic activity.
Seated Balance - works abdominal, obliques, hip flexors, and lower back muscles
Step One: Sit on the center of the disc. Your knees should be bent with your feet flat on the floor. Your arms should be raised out in front of you.
Step Two: While tightening your abdominal muscles, slowly lean back raising your feet off of the floor. Hold for a count of two. Slowly return to starting position. Repeat. Perform 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions.
Stepping - engages all stabilizers. The purpose of this exercise is to train your body to make adjustments when you transfer from one medium to the next (e.g., from solid floor to unstable balance disc; sidewalk to grass).
Step One: Stand in front of the disc with your eyes fixed straight ahead.
Step Two: Step onto the disc with your right foot, placing it just to the right of the center.
Step Three: Step onto the disc with your left foot, placing it just to the left of the center, so that your feet are shoulder width apart. Hold for a count of two.
Knee to Chest - works glutes and hip extensors; engages all stabilizers
Step One: Stand in front of the disc with your arms extended in front and your knees slightly flexed.
Step Two: Step onto the disc with your right foot.
Step Three: While slightly flexing at the hips, bring your left knee up toward your chest.
Step Four: Bring left leg back behind you, stepping onto the floor. Then step back off of the disc with your right foot. Repeat. Perform 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions per lead leg (e.g., perform 10 reps with stepping with your right leg first, then 10 reps stepping with your left leg first).
Note: Before beginning an exercise program or increasing the intensity level of a current routine, a physician's approval should be obtained, especially for older adults and those at risk for or who currently have chronic health conditions.
Labels: balance, balance disc, BOSU balance trainer, core strength, knee to chest, seated balance, stepping