As runners, there’s nothing more frustrating than knowing our injury prevention workouts aren’t always enough. Despite our best efforts, sometimes an injury arrives that derails our running progress. Even when everything is done right – strength training, cross training and recovering – injuries sometimes still manage to find their way into your training. Being forced to take time off for an injury is like a slap in the face after practicing all the correct recovery techniques.
Lucky for us, there are a few extra things we can do to go above and beyond regular strength training. If you’re prone to injury or pain while running, taking a few extra steps towards injury prevention may be just what you need to stay out of the doctor’s office. This bosu ball workout is ideal for runners because it intensifies all of the regular strength exercises solely through the addition of the bosu ball.
So what is a bosu ball used for?
A bosu ball is not really a ball at all, it’s more like half of a stability ball. With one flat side and one curved side, it provides ample opportunities for balance training. Completing a normal strength exercise on the bosu ball, such as a squat or lunge, greatly increases its difficulty. The great thing about a bosu ball is that it has two different sides, providing an easier option for beginners and a more challenging level for others.
With these bosu ball exercises, your body not only has to work to complete the exercise, but now has to work to stabilize itself throughout the movement as well. These balance exercises really aid in working all the muscles in one area, rather than isolating a few at a time. Together in one bosu ball workout for runners, these balance exercises give you a quick, well rounded strength session.
If you’ve spent any amount of time in Physical Therapy for a running injury, you’ve no doubt encountered the bosu ball. And if you haven’t – consider yourself lucky. Balance training is an effective way to proactively stay ahead of injury and improve your running strength all around. This quick bosu ball workout can give you just the strength you need to stay healthy, even in completing it just one time a week.
Bosu Ball Workout for Runners
Squats x 20
This classic bodyweight move is greatly intensified with the use of a bosu ball. Beginners can complete their squats with their feet on the round side of the bosu ball, or you can place your feet on the flat side for an extra challenge.
Glute Bridges x 20
Complete a bridge with your feet placed on either the round of flat side of the bosu ball (the flat side is more challenging).
Plank with Kicks x 60 seconds
Balance your elbows on the flat side of the bosu ball while keeping your body in plank formation. Raise one leg at a time slowly, making sure your hips and back does not sag.
Mountain Climbers x 50
Place your hands on the flat side of the bosu ball while the rest of your body remains in mountain climber position. Balance the bosu ball beneath your hands while you complete the mountain climbers.
V Sit x 30 seconds
Sit on the round side of the bosu ball and extend your feet in the air to form a V with your upper and lower body. Extend your hands out to the side or in front of you to aid in balancing. Hold for 30 seconds.
Heel Kick x 20 (10 each side)
Kneel on the round side of the bosu ball, placing your hands on the BOSU just above your knees for extra balance. Simultaneously extend your left leg directly behind you and right arm directly in front of you. Return to kneeling position, and then repeat with the opposite leg and arm.
Lunge x 30
Place one foot on top of the round side of the bosu ball. Lunge forward into normal position while balancing the back leg on the bosu ball.
Pistol Squats x 20
Place on foot on top of the bosu ball, and lunge backwards with your opposite foot. From the lunge position, push your weight forward onto your front foot. Bring your back knee up towards your chest while balancing on top of the bosu ball.
These quick bosu ball exercises are all you need to take your strength workout to the next level. Incorporating a bosu ball workout into your weekly training will help you prevent injury and stay strong on the run. Balance training is often very eye opening, as it puts your weaknesses right out in the open – and they’re usually weaknesses we didn’t even know we had. Use the bosu ball to develop equal strength on both sides of the body and see your improvements each week. This bosu ball workout for runners is an essential workout for any training plan.