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Medicine Ball Exercises For Abs

ball-exercises
(Image credit: Unknown)

The medicine ball is one of the most underrated bits of fitness equipment, particularly for working your core. Armed with a medicine ball you can challenge your abs in a wide variety of ways.

For starters a medicine ball is a weight you can use to add resistance to exercises like crunches by holding it aloft or against your chest. Then you can also use one as an unstable base to rest on during moves like press-ups, with that instability forcing your core muscles to work harder for the duration of the exercise.

Most enjoyable of all, some medicine balls can be used for exercise like slams and throws (in the right environment, of course). These moves are both great for your core strength and a terrific way to relieve frustration.

Assuming you’re convinced, you’ll need a medicine ball, and you can use this collection of the best medicine balls to get one delivered to your door. Then you’ll find an array of medicine ball exercises for abs to try below. Or you can use this medicine ball abs workout to string a few great exercises together into one challenging session. Enjoy.

Beginner Exercises

One leg slam down

One leg slam down

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Stand on one leg and hold the ball overhead. Bring the ball down powerfully and throw it to the floor. Keep your core strong throughout the move.

One leg overhead toss

One leg overhead toss

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Stand on one leg and hold the ball overhead. Toss the ball from hand to hand, keeping your body upright and steady throughout.

Standing throw

Standing throw

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Stand in a split stance, with one foot in front of the other. Bring the ball back over one shoulder, turning your torso to that side. Powerfully twist your body back to centre and throw the ball to a partner or against the wall.

Intermediate Exercises

Pullover crunch

Pullover crunch

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Lie with the ball held straight out behind your head. Lift your shoulders and lower back off the floor and bring the ball down in front of you.

Reverse crunch

Reverse crunch

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Hold the ball between your knees with thighs vertically aligned. Curl your knees towards your chest by lifting your hips off the floor. Pause at the top of the move and lower slowly to start.

Side throws

Side throw

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Hold the ball with straight arms in front of your chest. Twist your torso to one side, then powerfully twist to other side and throw the ball to a partner.

Round body pass

Round body pass

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Sit with your body leaning back and feet held off the floor. Maintain that position while moving the ball around your body. Reverse the direction of the ball from time to time.

Advanced Exercises

Crunch throw

Crunch throw

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Hold the medicine ball against your chest. Curl your shoulders off the floor powerfully and throw ball to partner. Catch the ball and return slowly to start.

Sledgehammer

Sledgehammer

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Stand with your feet apart and hold the ball overhead. Bring the ball down powerfully between your knees and return. Keep your back straight and core muscles tensed throughout.

Medicine ball leg drops

Medicine ball leg drops

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Grasp the ball between your feet and hold your legs straight up. Slowly lower your legs until your feet are just above the floor. Return to start and repeat.

Seated Russian twist

Russian twist

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Sit leaning at about 45° to the floor and keep your back straight and knees bent. Hold the ball with straight arms and twist your torso to one side. Twist from side to side, keeping back straight throughout.

Lunge woodchop

Lunge woodchop

(Image credit: Glen Burrows)

Stand straight and lift the ball over one shoulder. Step forward and lower into a lunge with your front knee over your front foot. Chop the ball down and across your body, keeping your back straight.

Joe Warner
Joe Warner

Joe Warner worked for Men’s Fitness UK, which predated, and then shared a website with, Coach, from 2008 to 2013, then returned as editor of Men’s Fitness UK from 2016 to 2019.