Stability Ball Leg Raise
I have been posting a lot lately about different ways to train the core musculature. This is obviously because I released “The Athlete’s Complete Guide To Core Training” and I want individuals to know about the many effective ways to hit the mid-section. There is tons of information out there right now saying “do this”, “don’t do that”, “don’t do a sit-up you will blow out a disc”, and I could continue. Just look at Facebook and you will see it all! All I did was put all the different approaches I use throughout the year with my college athletes into one giant book. Agree or disagree with what is in there is up to you but it is “real” training with a proven track record.
In this post, I am sharing with you a stability ball exercise which is not meant to look like a circus stunt. It is a great exercise that most will find challenging. In the video, I have two of my women’s basketball players performing the stability ball leg raise. We set it up on the ab bench not because we want to see if we can stay up there, but because the ball fits nicely there with the handles to hold on to. You can also place a stability ball in front of something like a squat rack and hold onto the rack but believe it or not that is much harder to stabilize on the ball than positioning it on the ab bench.
Basically, lay back over the stability ball so it is positioned comfortably in the mid to upper back area, reach back and hold onto something stable; then lift your legs slowly off the ground to make sure you are stable enough to hold that position. If you can not hold that position without almost falling off the ball, you are not ready for this exercise and should opt for a more basic stabilization exercise for the core.
If you find you can maintain stabilization on the ball then slowly raise the legs up with a slight hip up movement at the top (refer to video). When you do the hip up movement; focus on pulling in the belly button towards your spine. Then lower the hips and legs slowly and under control until you feel a slight stretch in the abdominal area and repeat. This is a very technique oriented exercise and should only be done until the form starts to break down. I normally do not prescribe a number of reps for this exercise. Normally, it is a low volume of reps with very focused controlled movement.
For more result producing core exercises like this, please check out “The Athlete’s Complete Guide To Core Training”.
Hope that helps!
To your health,