By Selene Yeager
Sit on the ball. Start with dumbbells at shoulder height, palms facing out. Press the dumbbells straight up overhead. Pause, and lower weights back to shoulder height. Don't arch your back while doing this exercise.
Sit on the edge of the ball, feet together, a dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your back flat, bend forward at the waist, letting arms hang down on either side of legs. Squeeze shoulder blades and raise the weights out to the sides until parallel to the floor. Pause, then lower weights to the starting position.
Triceps Press Back
Sit on your stability ball. Hold the dumbbells in front of you with your arms bent at 90-degree angles, elbows at your sides. Keeping your back straight, bend slightly from the hips. Straighten both arms and extend the weights behind you, turning palms up toward the ceiling once arms are fully extended. Pause, then return to start.
Sit on the ball. Hold dumbbells down at sides, palms facing out. Keeping elbows at sides, lift the dumbbells up to your shoulders. Pause, and then lower.
Lie back on the exercise ball (start on your back on the floor if this is too difficult). Hold the dumbbells straight up over your chest so their ends face each other and your palms face the ceiling. Lower arms so your elbows point toward the floor and the weights are even with your chest. Press arms back to the start.
Tones: Chest, triceps
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, back straight, and knees slightly bent. Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your back straight, bend 90 degrees from the waist and allow arms to hang down toward the floor, palms facing legs. Squeeze shoulder blades together and bend elbows, raising the dumbbells up to either side of your torso. Pause, and lower back to the starting position.
Tones: Back, biceps
Work Out Your Core Muscles
Your core consists of the collection of muscles around your midsection that, when strong enough, supports your body in almost everything it does.
Sit on the ball with your feet flat on the floor, then carefully lean back and roll yourself along the ball until it nests in the small of your back. Touch your hands lightly behind your ears and slowly lift your upper body off the ball, contracting your stomach muscles to their fullest. Hold for a second (longer as it gets easier), then lower back down and repeat.
Core benefit: Flat, firm abs
Side Pillar Bridge
Lie on your left side. Bend your left arm so your forearm is extended in front of you as shown. Press into your left arm and lift your torso off the floor. Your upper body should form a straight line from your hips to your shoulders. Place your right hand on your hip. Hold 5 to 10 seconds. Lower to starting position. Complete a full set, then switch to the other side.
Core benefit: Svelte sides
Lie facedown on your stability ball so that your back is flat and your chest is off the ball. (If balance is a problem, you can anchor your feet against a wall.) Extend your arms straight in front of you toward the floor, palms facing up. Pull your shoulder blades in toward your spine and lift and extend your arms to the sides to create a T with your torso. Pause, then lower your body back to start.
Core benefit: Pretty posture
Ball Hip Lift
Lie on your back with hands behind your head and hook the ball with your legs so it's nestled between heels and hamstrings. Contract your abs and lift the ball off the floor, rolling your pelvis off the floor and tucking your knees toward your chest. Keep your navel pulled toward your spine throughout the move. Pause; then slowly lower your legs back to the starting position.
Core benefit: No more lower belly pooch
Stand with your arms extended, palms down. Tighten your abs and lift your right foot off the floor and slightly behind you. Bend forward and extend your right leg behind you until your upper body is parallel to the floor. Your body should form a T. Pause, then lower to the starting position. Alternate legs for a complete set to each side.
Core benefit: Improved balance and flexibility