A medicine ball isn’t only good for a spot of end-of-session core work; used correctly it can provide a full-body workout in its own right.
Online PT Luke Grainger helps you get the ball rolling…
Exercises 1a to 1d are warm-up exercises. They are to be done back to back with no rest between the four exercises.
Do 10 reps of each and repeat the round three times.
Exercises 2a to 2c and 3a to 3c are working sets. Again, these are to be done back to back with no rest between each of the three exercises.
Complete 10 reps of each and repeat three to five times.
The Medicine Ball Warm-Up
Areas worked: internal and external obliques, quadratus lumborum (QL), erector spinae, lats
- Stand tall with soft knees, holding the ball in front of you.
- Twist from side to side, keeping your eyes on the ball and allowing your ankles to go with the movement.
Areas worked: delts, internal and external obliques, traps, pecs, lats
- Begin with the ball up in the air on your right-hand side.
- Chop it down to your left while bending your legs, turning your shoulders and allowing your lower body to go with the movement.
- Immediately return to the start position and go again.
- Once you’ve completed 10 reps, switch sides and go again.
1c. Reverse Lunge with Overhead Reach
Areas worked: quads, hamstrings, calves, glutes, core, delts, traps, lats
- With the ball at chest height, step back into a deep reverse lunge while stretching your arms up and over your head.
- Return to the start position and go on the other leg.
1d. Figure of 8
Areas worked: abs, obliques, QL, erectors
- Sit on the ground with your legs bent, feet apart and the med ball in both hands.
- Leaning back slightly and keeping your feet from touching the ground, pass the ball in a figure of eight around, under and over each leg. That’s one rep.
The Medicine Ball Workout
2a. Plyometric Split Squat with Twist
Areas worked: quads, hamstrings, calves, glutes, core, biceps, lats
- Begin with your right leg bent behind you, your left leg bent in front and the med ball held to your left.
- Drive up explosively through both legs and while in the air switch both feet over and twist the ball to your right side.
- Land, then reverse the movement, finishing with your left leg in front of you and the ball to your left.
2b. Wall Ball
Areas worked: quads, hamstrings, calves, glutes, core, delts, traps, lats, triceps
- Choose a spot on the wall approximately 6-10ft above you.
- Stand a little way back and squat down with the ball held at your chest.
- Keeping good posture through your spine, the moment your elbows touch your knees drive up explosively through your heels and throw the ball in the air at your chosen spot.
- Catch the ball through soft knees and immediately go into the next rep.
- Avoid leaning backwards when catching the ball. Catch it at the top of your chest and hold your form together.
Areas worked: abs, lats, quads, hip flexors
- Lie flat on the floor with your feet together, your arms straight and the ball between your hands.
- Simultaneously lift your arms, torso and legs off the floor.
- Try to touch the ball to your feet before slowly returning to the start position.
3a. Press-Up and Switch
Areas worked: pecs, triceps, core, delts, traps
- With one hand on the ball, do a deep press-up.
- Once complete, change hands by moving the hand on the floor up onto the ball and then moving the hand that was on the ball down to the floor.
- Perform another deep press-up, then repeat the process.
Areas worked: lats, core, biceps, triceps, quads, glutes, hamstrings, calves
- With the med ball between your feet, do a deep squat to grab the ball from the ground.
- Stand all the way up onto your toes while stretching the ball up over your head.
- Explosively drive your hips back while simultaneously dragging the ball down and smashing it into the floor, just in front of you.
3c. Russian Twist
Areas worked: obliques, rectus abdominis, QL
- Sit on your backside with the ball in your hands and your feet just off the floor.
- Keeping your chest up, twist to touch both hands on one side of your body, then the other, without moving your head. That’s one rep.
Photography: Eddie Macdonald | Model: Ben Gregory