The following exercises will help build core muscle, improve balance, and enhance overall body strength.
Strengthening the Core Muscles
These are the main three muscles that make up your core:
Tultifidus– The main back muscles that support the lumbar spine
Transverse abdominus– The deep abdominal muscles.
Quadratus lumborum– The muscles found in the lower back that help to maintain pelvic and spinal balance.
These muscles work in union and are responsible for protecting the spine. They make daily activities such as bending, throwing, running and reaching for things easier since all such activities require core/stabilizer muscles. Keeping these muscles well trained helps to prevent difficulties with simple movement such as walking and pulling.
Jog and Dribble
Break the ice and get the blood flowing with this move. You don’t have to be a professional athlete to enjoy doing exercises with the fitness ball.
- Line everyone up in two or three rows and ask people to dribble their ball (like basketball players) while jogging across the room.
- Depending on space available, complete 4–6 sets, switching lead arm with each pass.
- If space is limited, cue the class to jog in place and do alternating hamstring curls while dribbling the ball from hand to hand or bouncing it with both hands.
Sumo Stance with Torso Twists
Change the movement plane and warm up the hips, adductors, and trunk rotators with this core exercise.
- Externally rotate hips, step out into sumo squat and sink to 90 degrees if possible.
- Hold fitness ball at chest level and twist right.
- Keep arms strong throughout movement, elbows elevated and slightly bent.
- Pulse and twist for 3 counts; return to center.
- Repeat, twisting left.
- Complete 8 reps, each side.
Tip: if you are looking for more fun when doing warm ups, you could try using the King Athletic jump rope to spice things up a little bit.