Stability ball, also known as swiss ball, fitball, exercise ball or fitness ball, is one simple piece of ab exercise equipment to have for training your abdominal. (Stability ball is the only fitness equipment that I know has so many names!)
No abdominal machines or gadgets work as effective and safe as a stability ball. Here’s why…
When you sit on a machine, it stabilises your body and your stabiliser muscles are not called into action. Not training your body to integrate other muscles to work together with the abdominal and deep core muscles creates strength imbalances and leads to injuries over the long term.
Benefits of training with stability ball
1. Enhance balance, stability and control of deep muscle
There are deep abdominal and back muscles that work as stabilisers for entire body. These muscles work together to protect spine and help with daily activities eg: lifting, throwing, bending, reaching, etc. When training with a swiss ball, the nature and instability improves centre of balance and activate stabilizer muscles. Unconditioned stabiliser muscles can lead to injury.
2. Improve posture and support around joints
Training with stability ball involves full range of motion and recruits additional muscle groups to maintain proper form. As the ball moves freely, it creates a wider range of motion for working the joints and keeping them flexible.
3 . Greater muscle strength and endurance
I’ve been training with stability ball for several years, and teach fitball classes twice a week. It’s an excellent ab exercise equipment that is inexpensive and yet very effective. A simple ball indeed, but with many uses. It can be used not only for abdominal exercises, but also total body workout.
In the Firm & Flatten Your Abs program, David Grisaffi explains the importance of core training. A complete abdominal training should not only focus on working superficial muscles (that gives the six-pack appearance), it must also strengthen and develop the underlying muscles. Strengthening the hidden muscles is crucial to preventing injury and improving physical performance. A core training program decreases the likelihood of back pain, neck pain, incontinence, ruptured disks, torn muscles and strained ligaments.
Your abdominal workout is not limited to crunches, sit ups and leg raises only. There are hundreds of exercises you can do for the core and abdominal without fancy gym equipment. Most of the ab exercises in Firm & Flatten Your Abs program can be done at home with a stability ball and bench only. A few of the abdominal exercises require cable apparatus which can be replaced with a light dumbbell.