Here are 12 Exercises You Should Try if you just purchased or already own a medicine ball.
1. Rock and Roll Up
This one is a tough exercise at first to coordinate but hits all your major muscle groups in one powerful move. Lie down, back to the mat, with knees bent. Hold a medicine ball on the ground with arms fully extended overhead. Pull the knees into the chest, preparing to use the weight of the ball (and the strength of your core!) to help catapult you to a controlled squat position, then standing. Next, slowly lower back into a squat, and ease back to the floor, butt first before lying back down. Repeat
2. Lunge With Overhead Press
Stand with your feet together, holding a lightweight medicine ball in front of the chest in both hands. Lift the right foot off the floor, bending the knee, and hold this position for one count before stepping forward into a lunge. With the body weight shifting to the right leg, reach the medicine ball straight overhead. While still in the lunge, pull the ball back to the chest, and bring the front leg back to the starting position and repeat.
3. Lunge With Twist
Engage your core, standing hip width apart with your shoulders relaxed. Hold the medicine ball a few inches in front of the chest, step forward into a lunge position with the right leg. For safety, keep the knee from sliding forward past the toes. Get deep into that lunge, making sure the front thigh is parallel to the floor, then with extended arms, reach the medicine ball to the right, rotating the torso at the same time. Maintain the lunge and return to center. Come to standing, then lunge with the other leg (and turn to the left this time). Do the twist in place, or moving forward as walking lunges.
4. Squat Press and Throws
Keep your heels grounded, then come to a squat position as if you were sitting in an invisible chair. Drive through your heels to jump up, and throw the medicine ball as straight up and as high as possible. Then get the heck out of the way quickly! Let the ball drop to the ground and then repeat.
5. Reverse Swings
This move could be almost as disastrous as if you threw a bowling ball the wrong way, so read and perform carefully. Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Hold a medicine ball directly in front of your chest, with your elbows pointing down towards the floor. Then lower yourself into a squat, by keeping your back flat, and your head facing forward. Reach the medicine ball back between the legs. Ready for the fun part? Explosively swing the ball up overhead to the point that it reaches behind the head and neck. Just don’t throw it backward! Keep those abs contracted as your ankles, your knees, and your hips extend. For some bonus points, throw the ball to the ground. Repeat.
6. Single-Leg Squat
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, your knees slightly bent. Then lift your right foot off the ground and extend it forward. Hold a medicine ball in front of your belly button. Lower your body into a squat position, while sitting back into an imaginary chair with the knees safely placed over the feet. Return to your start position, and then switch legs. That’s one rep.
7. Reaching Romanian Deadlift
This exercise takes balance, and a little breathing room to fully extend your body. You want to start by standing on your right leg, with the medicine ball in both of your hands. Bend your right knee slightly, and hinge forward at the hips, extending the left leg straight back. And for an extra challenge, you can extend your arms overhead. Your body should now form a straight line that is perpendicular to your standing leg. Return your extended leg back to the floor, and then repeat, then switch legs. Single-Leg Hip Bridge
8. Single-Leg Hip Bridges
Start by laying on your back and place the sole of the right foot on your medicine ball. Thrust your hips up towards the sky. With the left leg straight in the air, with all your weight that is supported by the right foot and the shoulders. Hold this for at least one count, then slowly return yourself to the start position with the butt on the mat, and then repeat.
9. Step Jumps
Keep your medicine ball at your heart, and never let go (just kidding) but while straddling the middle of a low bench or step. Make sure to find one that is sturdy enough! Drop down into a squat until your bottom comes in contact with the bench. Stand about six inches from the low bench or platform, and jump onto it, so that your feet will land in a natural, wide stance. Carefully proceed to jump back down to the start position and repeat.
10. Circle Squats
Start by holding a medicine ball at the right hip in a standing position. Rotate the ball overhead toward the left, while stepping out the left leg to into a squat (just like a sumo wrestler). Turn the ball all the way to the right side of your body, while still standing in the squat position, then step your feet back together, and move the ball back to the right. Repeat this and then switch directions.
11. Rolling Push-Up
Add a medicine ball to your standard push-up and watch it quickly morph the upper body-blaster into an even more challenging type of move. Get into a high-plank with the medicine ball under one of your hands, and lower your chest toward the floor to perform a push-up. Return yourself to a high-plank and then roll the ball to the other side of you. You can modify this by dropping to your knees.
12. Medicine Ball Push-Up
Drop down and get real low. Start yourself in a traditional push-up position, tuck your toes under, place the palms of your hands on the medicine ball, and shift your body weight all the way forward until you’re in a plank position. Keeping your core tight, and your head aligned with your spine, slowly lower your chest toward the ball until it just about touches, keeping your elbows pinned tightly against your sides. Finish this move by pressing upward through your arms until they become fully extended. Again, if you need any adjustments, feel free to pop your knees on the mat.