The 15-Minute Medicine Ball Workout That Challenges Your Core
Grab this classic bit of kit to get a lean, strong body in less time
If you’ve never used a medicine ball for your workout then you’re missing out. They’re about as old-school as training equipment gets, but they’re still found in gyms everywhere for a reason – they’re a brilliantly effective training tool.
Medicine balls are particularly useful for explosive movements, and there’s no better exercise for relieving stress in the gym than the medicine ball slam, where you hurl one into the ground as hard as possible. You can’t do that with a dumbbell, unless your gym is really very laid-back about the state of its floors.
They’re also great for core exercises and moves where you put your body in an unstable position to challenge your balance. The six-move workout below is a mix of explosive exercises and core moves. It will challenge your entire body and get your heart pumping, and all you need is a medicine ball and a bit of space. And we promise after one round of this workout, you’ll never doubt the effectiveness of the medicine ball again.
How to do the workout
Do the six exercises in order, sticking to the rep counts detailed, without resting until you finish all the reps of the sixth and final move of the circuit. Rest for two minutes, then repeat the circuit. Do three circuits in total. As you progress you can add another circuit.
1 Squat press
Reps 10 Rest 0sec
Hold the ball with both hands at chest height. Squat down as low as you can, then stand back up and press the ball directly overhead until your arms are straight. Lower it back to the start position, then go straight into the next rep.
2 Rotating lunge
Reps 5 each side Rest 0sec
Hold the ball with both hands above your head. Take a big step forwards, bending both knees until your back knee is bent at 90°. As you lunge, rotate your torso in the direction of your leading leg. Return to the start and repeat on the other side.
Reps 6 Rest 0sec
Place both hands on the ball, then raise your hips so your body forms a straight line from head to heels. Do a press-up, ensuring that your elbows do not flare out to the sides as you lower. If you can’t do a single rep, perform the move on your knees.
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Reps 10 Rest 0sec
Hold the ball with both hands at chest height. Raise it overhead, then explosively slam it down in front of you. Catch it as it bounces and repeat the move. Aim to do each slam as forcefully as you can and keep the tempo high.
5 Russian twist
Reps 10 each side Rest 0sec
Start in the top of the crunch position, holding the ball in both hands. Rotate to one side and then the other, keeping your abs engaged. That’s one rep. If you want to make the move even more challenging you can raise your heels slightly.
Reps 6 Rest 2min
Start on your knees with both hands on the ball. Make sure there is tension on your abs, then slowly roll the ball forwards to lower your torso to the floor. Reverse the movement back to the start, then repeat the move. It’s important that as much of your bodyweight as possible is over your arms rather than your knees. This forces you to keep your abs tensed, so you work them harder.
Photography: Glen Burrows. Model: Jack Green@WModels
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