Medicine Ball Basics

Medicine balls are one of the most versatile pieces of equipment. You can used them to make normal exercised unstable, to add weight to simple core exercises or to engage you whole body in compound movements. However, not every type of medicine ball is equally suited for every task. The following few paragraphs will give you an idea of which medicine ball is best suited for which type of exercise.


–    Slam Balls: As the name may indicate, this type of medicine ball is meant for slamming. They have a very durable outer shell and their inner core is constructed in a way so that the ball will deaden upon impact. Whole body slams, wall slams or power tosses are great exercises to get your heart rate up and train for whole body power. Slam Balls can also be used in more traditional ways as weight for crunches. Although its deforming construction is not optimal it can still be used for stability exercises such as the plank.

–    High density (rubber) medicine balls: This is the most common type of medicine ball. You can use them for any type of exercise that requires the ball to bounce back to you as well as all the traditional medicine ball exercises.


–    Sand filled medicine balls: These are similar to the high density med balls but don’t bounce. They are also somewhat softer. When performing core exercises the shifting sand will make certain exercises more challenging.


–    Dual Handle Medicine balls: This type has two handles to hold on to during the exercise. This will allow you to use these medicine balls for one handed swings or other one handed exercises.


–    Sandbells: The Sandbell is a relatively new piece of equipment that is actually not really a medicine ball. It can however be utilised in many of the same ways. They are disc shaped neoprene sand filled bags. When performing any type of core exercise where you are required to hold on to a Sandbell, catch a send bell or throw one, the shifting sand will make it more difficult because of the shifting sand.  This will also help strengthen your grip. You can also use these in the same way you can use a slam ball.

–    Low density medicine balls (e.g.Dynamax balls): These are a lot larger than the traditional medicine ball and also quite soft. These properties make them exceptional for partner work or for any exercises during which you need to catch the ball. Their low density means that they don’t bounce a lot so you can use them for slams where you want the ball to bounce back every so slightly. Due to their large size, they can also be used as a guide for squats.

Here is an examples of a medicine ball workout!

Medicine ball plank. Use high density med balls, dual handle med balls or low density med ball

Please note, for all of these medicine balls, please visit any Fitness Town location or online here.

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