NEARLY EVERY FLOOR EXERCISE IMAGINABLE, PERFORMED WITH A BOSU BALL, plus more! Jen Miller provides an over-the-top list of ways to use this piece of equipment if you have access to one and want to use it in a circuit training session. Her review article, “40 Bosu Ball Circuit Training Exercises”, is a guide to increasing the difficultly of some tried and true moves without needing to learn entirely new routines.
The article explains how lower body work can be stepped-up to accomplish twice as much as intended in Bosu-less exercises, by adding the challenge of instability. The same is true for the upper body and core moves.
“Any exercise circuit aimed at increasing the muscles in your legs and glutes greatly benefits from incorporating a Bosu Ball. Every exercise becomes more effective because the instability of the Bosu Ball forces you to engage the secondary muscles around the primary muscle group to keep yourself steady throughout the exercise.”
The list of exercises includes a few that are static, some which involve the use of weights/dumbbells, and a good number of heart rate-boosting “cardio’ moves (to improve cardio-respiratory fitness). For those not interested in a total Bosu Ball workout, there are plenty of choices to select from to create a few shorter sessions.
Beginners might consider starting with old-school static exercises in which the only aim is to maintain good form. Merely standing on the rounded soft side, (or firm flat surface of a flipped over Bosu) can challenge those secondary lower body muscles. Maintaining balance on one leg at a time for 30 seconds to 2 minutes is more difficult. Performing planks (resting on forearms with bent elbows on the rounded surface) for progressively longer periods can be a tough test too. With hands gripping the flat surface of a flipped Bosu, straight arm planks can be varied (tilting the ball from side to side turns up the burn on abdominal muscles).
Simple moves can be tried using the Bosu as well, without greatly increasing injury risk. Performing hips bridges with both feet resting on the rounded surface makes this move more difficult; one leg at a time is more challenging. Doing push-ups and triceps dips, as demonstrated in the piece, can be tough and safe for beginners.
Before reading this article, I had never considered performing exercises with weights on a Bosu. It might be a method that increases the difficulty of strength work without upping the amount of weight lifted. Moves that can minimize my risk of injury are always great finds!
Thanks to Jen Miller for opening the door to a new way of thinking about performing and getting more out of old exercises. The Bosu variations involve a relatively small amount of mental learning that possibly will translate to a much greater amount of muscle learning.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
“40 Bosu Ball Circuit Training Exercises” by jenreviews.com
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EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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