ABOUT THE MEDICINE BALL
A medicine ball is a weighted ball, usually between 4-12 pounds, that you can use in your exercise routine. Due to its weight and shape, it requires a lot of coordination, strength, and stamina to keep it under control. The medicine ball is actually one of the oldest pieces of fitness equipment still in use today. The ball has been in use among athletes and warriors for over 3,000 years. They have been used by Egyptians, Roman gladiators, and even the Greek Spartans in ancient times. Nowadays, you can catch med balls in use among Olympic athletes, the first lady of the United States, as well as in most gyms across the country.
MEDICINE BALL BENEFITS
- Functional Strength – It is one of the most effective tools to train all of the muscle groups in your body, especially your stabilizer muscles to work together for functional strength. This is a huge athletic advantage and isolation lifting does not provide this. Over time, your body will learn to become more efficient (use less energy) because it learns what muscles are needed to work together during certain movements with the ball. When a medicine ball is thrown to you, the path it travels is not exactly known. Therefore, when you catch it, you have to use different muscle groups to balance your body and control the ball. Each repetition is not exactly the same as the last because it is hard to throw, move, or catch a medicine ball the exact same way each time. This trains your body’s muscles to react faster to handle the heavy load in a natural way.
- Versatility – Exercises can be tailored for specific sports or movements. Medicine balls can be used on a spectrum from rehabilitation training to plyometric training.
- Inexpensive – You do not need to purchase expensive or complicated equipment. Many times, you can buy a new med ball for around $20.
MEDICINE BALL EXERCISES
You can do a TON of exercises with the ball. (Check out this PDF from Perform Better for some illustrations available here.) For a sample medicine ball circuit, check out this video below!
WHERE TO BUY
A medicine ball is a great thing to have and use! At our small-ish studio, we have 12! If you are looking for the BEST medicine balls (or any fitness equipment) I ALWAYS recommend buying from Perform Better because everything is of the highest quality.
Do you currently use medicine balls? Do you have a favorite med ball exercise?