This month’s theme for the Run It Series is equipment based workouts for runners. I’ve already shared kettlebell and resistance band workouts here, so I want to give some attention to my other favorite piece of workout equipment: the stability ball.
The stability ball is a versatile and invaluable tool for any runner. Core strength, hip stability, and glute strength are essential for preventing injury and running faster, and the stability ball will train those specific areas. Best of all, a stability ball is an affordable and convenient piece of equipment for strength training at home.
Just don’t let your dog near your stability ball. Trust me – especially if your dog is a hyper Labraheeler with a penchant for balls.
This workout is short but effective: youwork your entire core, glutes, back, shoulders, and hamstrings in this routine. I usually add it on to the end of a total body strength training workout or include it as a quick core routine after a run.
Stability Ball Pike:
Come into a straight-arm plank position (push-up position) with your shins resting on the stability ball. Engage your abs and keep your legs straight as you raise your hips toward the ceiling, hinging to draw the ball closer to your arms (you should resemble an upside-down V.). Hold for one second then reverse to complete one rep.
If this is too difficult, pull your knees into your chest instead of performing the full pike.
Hamstring Ball Curl:
Lie on your back with your arms by your sides, your legs straight, and your feet and calves resting on the stability ball. Raise your hips and use your feet to draw the ball closer to your butt while bending your knees, so that your body forms a straight line from your knees through your hips to your shoulders. Reverse to complete one rep.
To make this exercise more difficult, place your arms out in a T-position from your body or raise your arms straight in the air.
Stability Ball Deadbug
Lie on your back with your legs raised. Use your arms and legs (which can be straight or bent at the knee) to hold the ball above your torso. Slowly lower your left leg and right arm toward the ground while holding the ball with your other arm and leg; return to start and repeat with your right leg and left arm for one rep. Be sure to keep your lower back flat on the ground – imagine pulling your navel in toward the ground.
Sandra of Organic Runner Mom has a rower workout for runners:
Sarah of Run Far Girl has a total body strength workout:
Carly of Fine Fit Day also shares a stability ball workout:
Allie of Vita Train for Life has a workout for runners and triathletes alike:
Angela of Happy Fit Mama shares a kettlebell workout for runners:
What is your favorite piece of workout equipment for strength training?