Yoga balls, also known as stability or exercise balls, are pretty popular among people who are focused on maintaining fitness while also adding a little twist to their workout. But how exactly should they be used for exercise and are they effective for losing weight?
Yoga balls can help you lose weight and build muscles if you use them correctly along with a healthy diet. Incorporate them into your daily workout to strengthen your core as well as upper body and leg muscles.
In this article, we’re going to discuss how effective exercising with yoga balls is in helping you achieve your target weight and get some impressive muscle gain. Let’s dive into it!
How Effective Are Yoga Ball Exercises For Losing Weight?
Yoga balls are great for strengthening your core and developing the muscles of your abdominal wall, while also improving stability and balance.
Incorporating them into your workout routine will not only make it more fun and versatile but will help you lose weight and build muscles. Choose a ball that suits you and try out some easy exercises at first to learn your way about it.
Once you get the hang of working out with a yoga ball, you can use it for a wide range of exercises targeting your arm and shoulder muscles, pectorals, and abdominal as well as gluteal muscles.
We’ll delve into some of these exercises later in detail and talk about their efficacy. For now, you can check out this video to learn about the basics of exercising with a yoga ball.
However, it is important to keep in mind that exercising with a yoga ball, or any exercise in general, will not be very effective in helping you lose weight if you don’t modify your diet accordingly. To lose weight in a healthy and consistent manner, adopt a low-calorie diet that is packed with nutrients and build a manageable exercise routine that works for you.
Top Yoga Ball Exercises
Here are some of the most effective exercises you can do at home to get in shape with just a yoga ball! Let’s talk about how you can strengthen your core and build some muscles.
Do a few planks
You can do planks with a yoga ball and build your abdomen and leg muscles. This is a modified form of planks done by resting your elbows on the yoga ball and bringing your foot forward, like taking a step, towards the ball. Do this alternatively with both legs while focusing on maintaining your stability on the yoga ball.
Get your push-ups in
You can practice push-ups and sit-ups with a yoga ball as well—and they’re way more fun. To do a push-up, balance yourself with your stomach on the yoga ball and stretch your arms and legs out. Move forward by putting your hands one after the other. You can do a v-sit-up with the yoga ball by placing it between your feet and bending toward it.
Do some crunches with the yoga ball by laying back on the ball with your hands behind your head. Place your feet firmly on the ground and move the upper part of your body forward in a quick motion, like crunches are usually done. Make sure to keep yourself firmly balanced on the ball to avoid falling, and repeat this exercise as often as you can.
Can You Burn Calories By Sitting On A Yoga Ball?
If you’re a fan of The Office, you might remember Dwight bringing in a yoga ball to sit on at his desk, claiming it helps burn more calories.
Although this might seems like a brainwave moment and tempt you to order a ball right away, the truth is a bit underwhelming. Bouncing on a yoga ball while you work can definitely help you burn calories, but not a very significant amount.
On average, you can burn around 75 extra calories in an eight-hour workday if you replace your desk chair with a yoga ball and bounce away as you work. While it is certainly not a large amount, the numbers do add up if you do it regularly.
However, another thing to consider is that sitting on a yoga ball daily for a long period of time can actually be harmful in the long run.
This is because research has shown that sitting on a yoga ball for such a long period of time every day can worsen your posture and strain your muscles, giving you a bad backache.
So, the takeaway here is that while balancing on a yoga ball instead of your usual office chair can help you burn a few calories, it is necessary not to overdo it as it could result in strain on your back.
How To Choose The Correct Yoga Ball
The most important thing to consider when buying a yoga ball, especially if you’re going to be sitting on it, is the size that is appropriate for you. This is determined by how tall you are, as you must be able to use it and sit on the ball comfortably without losing your balance or straining your muscles.
If you’re confused between two balls and not sure which size is exactly right for you, go with the larger one. Make sure that the store offers a return or exchange policy in case the size turns out to be wrong for you. Another important thing to consider is the material and durability of the ball.
It goes without saying, but the more durable your ball is the better as you don’t want it to burst during your workout. Choose a brand that has thicker, high-quality material and is ‘burst resistant’. This basically means that in case the ball gets damaged, it will release air slowly instead of bursting, which would prevent you from getting hurt.
To keep yourself safe, check the ball regularly for any signs of damage or punctures and keep a pump nearby to re-inflate it if needed.
Also keep in mind that most balls have a maximum weight limit, so check the label for that before you buy it. You can get your yoga ball from any sports and fitness shop or departmental store that has it, or search for online stores as well.
Can Obese People Use A Yoga Ball?
You can definitely use a yoga ball even if you are obese, just make sure to check the packaging and choose a ball that can support your weight easily. Most yoga balls have a maximum weight limit of around 250 pounds, so if you weigh more than that look around for different brands and sizes that are suitable for you.
It is essential to choose a ball that has a higher maximum weight limit than your current weight to prevent any injuries or accidents in case the ball gets damaged. Go for a high-quality brand, even if it’s a little expensive, to make sure that the yoga ball you are choosing is durable and lasts you a long time.
Yoga balls are especially useful for building your core and giving your abdominal muscles a good workout. All of these exercises, especially planks and crunches, will help you strengthen your core and get rid of any excess fat around the waist. Doing them regularly will make a big difference and help give you that impressive six-pack.
To really see a difference in terms of losing weight, it is important to not only maintain a proper exercise routine but also bring changes to your diet to make it more healthy. Just focusing on exercise while neglecting your diet will seriously impede your progress and prolong your weight loss journey.